I am always amazed at the stuff we drink all day. Soft drinks full of high-fructose corn syrup, diet drinks full of aspartame, iced tea and coffee with enough caffeine to blow out your adrenal glands. I’m not knocking anyone. I used to drink all that junk, too.
It wasn’t until I ditched soda pop five years ago, and coffee a year later, that I had to start seeking out alternatives. Like herbal tea and sparkling water and kombucha. Luckily, there are so many excellent options out there these days.
Check out all the fabulous drinks I found at Natural Products ExpoWest 2012:
Note: I apologize that I am late with this post. I got hacked last weekend because I didn’t update a single plugin on time. That resulted in a solid 24 hours of time (with a break for sleeping, but of course!) spent fixing everything. Fun times!
I was beyond thrilled to meet the founders of Pukka Tea. Seriously, I was just a tad starstruck.
You see, I’ve a fan of Pukka Tea for the past year or so. I fell in love with them at first sip. Their tea is some of the very best I’ve ever tasted.
And let me tell you, meeting them in person was fabulous. They are so cool, so British, so fun. Kinda like rock stars, only they run an herbal tea company.
I hope you seek them out and fall in love like I did.
Where to Find Pukka Tea
Pukka Tea is not in a lot of stores in the United States yet. They are new to the U.S. In fact, this was their very first time at ExpoWest. Trust me, they will be in more stores soon. They are just that good.
I have been buying their tea at Vitamin Shoppe. You can also find Pukka Tea on Amazon.
Ayala’s Herbal Water
If you are not familiar with Ayala’s Herbal Water, you need to be.
I’ve been loving this water since I discovered it at ExpoWest back in 2009. It is some of the best tasting water (if not THE best tasting) I’ve ever had.
If you love mint water or cucumber water in the summertime, Ayala’s herbal water is like that only about 100 times better. I’m especially excited about their new line of sparkling herbal water that comes in glass bottles. So delicious! The herbs give the sparkling water that extra flavor kick so you won’t miss your soda or iced tea.
Where to Find Ayala’s Herbal Water
Blackwater Mineral Water
What is Blackwater? It’s a natural mineral water rich in fulvic acid, supplementing your diet with 77 trace minerals.
According to the Black Water website:
Fulvic acid is an antioxidant that occurs naturally in specific soils, plants and plant-based foods.
Probably your best chance to obtain fulvic and humid acids naturally is from eating organically grown vegetables. But it’s not guaranteed. When we see the USDA certification, we are assured that the foods are produced without antibiotics, hormones, pesticides, irradiation or bioengineering. Organic farmers are required to adhere to certain soil and water conservation methods and to rules about the humane treatment of animals.
However, as stated on the USDA/FDA website, “organic” doesn’t necessarily mean “healthier”. Although the practice of organic farming is more natural, the quality of the organic food is directly related to the quality of the soil used. If the soil is mineral deficient, then the vegetables will be mineral deficient. If you can, get to know your local organic farmer and learn about the soil they use. Soils rich in fulvic and humic substances are more likely to yield vegetables containing fulvic and humid acid.
Sounds healthy, but what does it taste like? It tastes like water. Yep, nothing more, nothing less.
Healthy or not, it looks so cool — it’s completely BLACK! I’m seriously thinking about making some black jello.
Where to Find Blackwater Mineral Water
You can buy Blackwater Mineral Water online. Better yet, order some of the Blackwater concentrate online. One bottle will provide a whole month’s supply (just add one teaspoon per day to a glass of water).
I gave up caffeine years ago. I’m glad that there are delicious coffee alternatives like Teechino.
I’m especially excited about their new Dandelion flavors. If you didn’t know, dandelion is really good for you and is a great detoxifier.
I also love their new individual “tee-bags”. Now, instead of having to brew a whole pot of coffee, I can make a cup of Teechino as easy as making a cup of tea.
Where to Find Teechino
We’ve been drinking Izze soda pop for years. It’s not an everyday thing, but we like to get some for special occasions. We buy it for parties or when we to Palm Springs on vacation.
Why do we love Izze? Because it’s a delicious fizzy soda pop that tastes exactly like regular soda pop — only it’s sweetened with nothing but fruit. No high fructose corn syrup here, baby!
You can also use Izze for mixed drinks. You know, when you’re in the mood for a Greyhound. But this one’s even better, since it’s sparkling.
Where to Find Izze
Where to find Izze.
Caveman Foods Kefir Soda Pop
Caveman Food Kefir Soda Pop was a fun discovery.
Mmm… .organic kefir soda pop. Not only is it fermented and full of nutrients, but it’s also low in sugar (since the sugar is fermented). And it tastes great!
I especially loved the Tarragon flavor. It’s not as sweet as other kefir sodas I’ve tried (which is good if you’re on a low sugar diet), and the flavor was so interesting.
If you love kefir soda pop, give this a try!
Where to Find Caveman Foods Kefir Soda Pop
Where to find Caveman Foods Kefir Soda Pop.
Have you tried KeVita yet? If not, you’re in for a treat.
It’s a naturally carbonated probiotic soft drink that comes in a variety of flavors, from Coconut to Lemon Ginger to Pomegranate. If your kids don’t like sauerkraut and you’re trying to get them to eat more fermented foods, consider keeping some KeVita in the fridge to give them instead of juice.
Where to Find KeVita
Where to find KeVita in stores. I usually find it at Whole Foods and other natural food stores.
Fentiman’s Botanically Brewed Beverages
I had never heard of Fentiman’s Botanically Brewed Beverages before. What a neat company! They are dedicated to making their drinks the old-fashioned way:
Today, every Fentimans Beverage is still made in our old time-honoured tradition by brewing and fermenting herbs and milled roots over seven days. (This compares to hours’ production time for typical soft drinks.)
I didn’t get to taste their traditional British Shandy (beer and lemon juice) but I’m dying to try it. They also sell the classic Dandelion and Burdock soda pop, which I loved.
I’m glad we stopped by their booth because we got the biggest laugh we had all day:
Now, don’t freak out. It’s not obscene. It’s just a card with a hole cut out — you put your hand behind it and it makes it look like a butt.
Kelly the Kitchen Kop and I had a good chuckle over that. I like a brand that doesn’t take itself too seriously.
Where to Find Fentiman’s Botanically Brewed Beverages
Where to find Fentiman’s. I’m gonna go get me some at Cost Plus!
Blue Sky Soda
Are you a fan of Blue Sky like Kelly and I are?
We don’t drink soda every day in our house but naturally sweetened soda pop is fun every once in a while and for special occasions.
We were super excited to find their new line of stevia soda pop. We loved all the flavors!
Where to Find Blue Sky
Where to find Blue Sky in stores. I usually buy Blue Sky at Whole Foods or other natural foods stores.
I had never heard of Fever-Tree before but I’m so glad I found them. Hands down, best ginger ale I’ve ever had.
We also tasted exceptional lemonade, tonic water, ginger beer and club soda. These Fever-Free drinks are a must for any home bar.
Where to Find Fever-Tree
You can also buy Fever-Tree on Amazon
Carpe Diem Kombucha
Carpe Diem Kombucha was one of our favorite kombuchas we tasted at ExpoWest. Loved the cranberry flavor, but honestly, they were all delicious.
Where to Find Carpe Diem Kombucha
Kikusui Organic Sake
How convenient to find Kikusui Organic Sake as I was eating my lunch of miso soup with natto and brown rice. If you’re not familiar with sake, it’s a Japanese rice wine.
And yeah, it was totally delicious. And a very lucky find, considering they moved all the wine and beer off the main floor (ExpoWest was a lot more fun when you could get beer and wine as you ate your way across the floor).
It’s rare to find organic sake in stores. If you are a sake lover, check out Kikusui!
Where to Find Kikusui Organic Sake
Where to find Kikusui Organic Sake. They don’t have a lot of info on their site, but they told me that you can often find Kikusui at Whole Foods and other natural foods stores.
What About You?
Do you buy any of these products? What are some of your favorites? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.
Check Back Monday
On Monday I’ll be posting more of my favorite things from ExpoWest 2012 in part 6 of the series — check back!