SocietyMarch 14, 2017

The Spinoff reviews New Zealand #10: The chocolate water


We review the entire country and culture of New Zealand, one thing at a time. Today: Alex Casey reviews H2Go’s new chocolate-flavoured spring water. 

Ever since Lewis Road Creamery set New Zealand on fire with their quite tasty choccie milk, companies everywhere have been shitting the bed with reckless abandon trying to reach the same frenzied, security-guard-required demands with their own novelty products. We’ve had hellishly sweet K bar chocolate, delicious-seeming Marmite stuffed-crust pizza and Squiggles forced to procreate with Goody Gum Drops in a moment of both national shame and collective tooth decay.

But it is not until now that someone has dared wade into the literal murky waters of… chocolate water.

The chocolate-flavoured H2Go, served up in an infant-size drink bottle, boasts that it is LOW IN SUGAR. It has 6 grams of sugar, about a sixth of the amount in a can of coke. But… it’s also about 1/178th of the amount of the deliciousness. The rusty colour doesn’t help – it honestly looks like the kind of water that contains a poo at best and a dead body at worst.

And then there’s the taste.

Here were just a few comparisons thrown around the office…

“It tastes like someone hosed out a vat of Primo and bottled it”

“Like a weak kids’ hot chocolate you’ve made and then forgotten to put milk in”

“It’s pool water!”

“It’s poo water!”

To be fair, it does say best served chilled, which we couldn’t quite wait for. It also warns in small print that the colour may change over time, which sounds totally fine and not incredibly distressing to witness at all. Desperate to find a silver lining, I tried to come up with some instances where this choco water might be useful or at least borderline enjoyable to consume:

  • Freeze the water into cubes and use them to add 1/178th of a mocha hit to your next iced java fix
  • Keep it on hand in case of another water shortage in New Zealand, just don’t get it jumbled with the stormwater
  • Freak out your doctor the next time you have to give a urine sample
  • Squirt it directly into your eyes and pretend you have stigmata
  • Hold it in the palm of your hand and pretend you are a giant

Good or bad? What is it? Why is it? How is it? Who am I?

Verdict: Good for a chortle between co-workers, terrible for a drink.

BONUS: For more in-depth discussion of this terrible product, download this week’s episode of The Real Pod below.

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Was this the light that the prime minister stared at while designing the traffic light framework? Probably not tbh. Photo: RNZ / Angus Dreaver

Excuse me, what colour is this? 

Attention drivers and other people who have from time to time looked at traffic lights: this is a scandal.
Image: Archi Banal

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