20 May, 2011

Blue Kool-Aid Bursts vs. Blue Mondo

You know what the most excellent part of the 1990's was?  Blue food.  There seemed to be an endless variety of blue stuff available, and it was everywhere.  Granted, they were mostly sweet things - sugary drinks and candies and frostings and like that - but it was also a lot easier for me to find blue cornmeal back then, too.

Anyway, blue food turned out to be a fad rather than a trend, and these days it's hard to find blue treats. This disappoints me, because the "blue raspberry" flavor commonly associated with the color has long been one of my favorites.  It started when I was a kid and my parents would take us to the local market for Italian ice.  There were only two flavors to choose from back then: lemon and what the guy behind the counter called "blue gelati." Blue ice in those days was just like it is today - brightly colored and vividly flavored with "blue raspberry" flavor.

One of the blue things still widely available is drink, and two of the most common blue drinks are Kool-Aid Bursts and Mondo. Both of them are delightfully blue in both color and taste, and both are completely devoid of any nutritional value save calories. And, while they are alike in these ways, they are ever so different indeed.

Kool-Aid Bursts have a strong blue flavor and is the darker-colored of the two. There is a hint of "body" to the liquid, just like you might find in other flavored beverages. It's sweet, even a bit too sweet, but there is an undefined tartness to the finish. Kool-Aid reminds me of the liquid that used to be inside those Nick'l Nips wax bottles when I was a kid.

Mondo is thinner in both texture and flavor; it's much more like colored water, and the color is almost identical to windshield washer fluid. The blue flavor is more diluted and the actual taste is as much sugarwater as it is blue razz. And taking a big drink all at once makes the back of my throat itch. 

Since both of these drinks are dirt cheap - usually about a dollar for a sixpack - I would choose the Kool-Aid.


kelvin said...

Mondo tasted better once but the formula was changed to cut the sugar.

Steve said...

"Kool-Aid Bursts have a strong blue flavor."

I think that sums up everything. WTF is "blue flavor?"

(Though I did rather enjoy the blue rasperry Fun Dip with that chalky-sweet edible stick. Whoever came up with that - selling suger in a bag with a sugar stick to eat when done - is a damn genius.)

kelvin said...

fun dip is the stuff of legend.we used to make money selling homemade fundip (koolaid and sugar) at school

Dave said...

Steve - "Blue flavor," at its best, is sweet blue raspberry with hints of burnt sugar, vanilla, and citrus. There are variations between manufacturers.

kelvin said...

Dave I'm not sure if you can find it that far north (i'm in sc)but you should try blue raspberry/blueberry Tampico.Actually has a little blueberry juice in it.(not much 1%)

girlnextdoor said...

gamotabdesperately seeking the name of the kids' drinks that came in plastic bottles with faces on them and names like "grumpy g" they were purple, pink, and green.

Dave said...

girlnextdoor - You're thinking of Squeezits. They were made by Betty Crocker.