Starbucks Pokémon Frappuccino is Really Nothing Special


Out in a night in Seattle, sipping a Pokémon Frap’

When visiting the United States, folks still playing Pokémon GO might want to try the game-inspired Frappuccino Starbucks Coffee is offering for a limited time. Curious in what the fuss is about when I was down in Seattle for Emerald City Comicon last weekend, and there was a sign advertising it, I knew I had to try it out. Admittedly, the lighting does skew how it looks like — since all I had was my backup cell phone (it can take reasonably lit pictures well) — but in what the drink looked like went from blackberry to pineapple colour in a quick instant when I stepped outside. Not all cell phone cameras are created equally.

Perhaps the outlet I went to was out of all the necessary portion of ingredients. I tasted more pineapple chunks than berry and thought about how this pick-me-up should have been crafted instead of the recipe posted online.

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Fast Food and the Fickle Finger of Fate

La Fogata Latina
749 View St.
Victoria, B.C.

J: Like the fickle finger of fate, my stomach is rarely satisfied with one incident and so it was a Colombian-influenced hot dog that was my next call of destiny. Pineapple sauce and crisps (chips for the non-British) is something that wasn’t as appealing as it sounded. If you’ve ever watched Red Dwarf then you’ve heard of Hitler’s infamous banana and crisps sandwich but would Adolf have switched to a pork cylinder in a bun and ruin his perfectly good mustache?

E: Or maybe that Colombiana cola which tasted as smooth as a a cream soda. I knew I had to take James to La Fogata Latina on my next visit to try out the rest of their menu. On my first visit, I tried their Mazorca ($4).

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GT’s Kombucha for the silver-tongued?

Fermented tea? With a drink called Kombucha you betcha! And with a variety of brands sitting in many a health food store and Fairway Markets over a year now, I finally made the decision to try this concoction.

GT’s Synergy brand seems to be leading the crowd, and this carbonated drink is not for the weak of heart. Simply put, the drink is highly carbonated and sour. I tried to polish one bottle off over a few days, taking a sip each day, and I did not get that far.

No matter what the added flavour is, this particular style of a fermented drink is not for everyone. This brew is nothing like beer. Try as I might, I didn’t get used the bitterness of this drink at all. I can see the drink working as a mixer to help balance out the acridness, but as for the health claims, the evidence is not there. I’m better off brewing my own mixture of herbs, fungi and bark prescribed from a traditional Chinese medicine man to mend my ailments away.

Ironically enough, that’s where this drink comes from. The origins of this kombucha drink can be traced back to ancient China where it was considered a “remedy for immortality.” So if the drinker wants a short life, he should sip this liquid? That’s a twist.

Another tale tells of how a Korean physician, Dr. Kombu, gave it to a Japanese Emperor as a healing tonic. Seriously, I think this drink is a product of folklore and many a Wild West tale. If readers remember all those travelling physician carts purporting to carry cure-it-all medicines, I’m willing to bet that kombucha was one of them.

Fentimans Cherry Tree Grows Tall

Cherry Tree Cola

Available at: The Root Cellar

Ed — What can be found in a champagne fountain but a round of bubbly? I’d have to say Fentimans Cherry Tree Cola does. It can flow like a round of sparkly wine to be enjoyed during a social event, if I had my choice. The drink offers more than just a simple excitement in my mouth: it’s a gingerly kiss of additional flavours that puts other cherry sodas to shame.

Quite simply, there is a hint of fermented ginger which helps enhance the other tastes. I discovered this drink at The Root Cellar. A day later, I’m sipping this lightly alcoholic drink and enjoying every drop.

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Blk Water Hardly Stands Out

Thankfully, I don’t watch The Real Housewives of New Jersey and nor do I care that the show’s stars are involved in a promotion of a black water product called Blk. Now if it was the third installment of Men in Black promoting this particular beverage, the geeks might be sold. But this drink’s claims of rebalancing a body’s natural pH level is questionable when there are other methods to do the same thing.

Fulvic acid may have its uses in agriculture, but as a product to consume, that does not sound all that appealing. I’d rather look to aquaculture or even cocunut water to help satisfy part of my nutritional needs.

I’ll admit the black look for this Blk is very slick. Its packaging and design is trendy, but as for its taste: give me white grapefruit juice to sip instead. I prefer a pleasant aftertaste than something mildly metallic. The drink itself is slightly acrid and sensitive taste-buds may not necessarily enjoy it.

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Singing the praises of Oh Sugar!

Oh Sugar
561 Johnson Street
Victoria, BC


2016 Update: This operation is now under new ownership.

I could very well sing the praises of the traditional folk song “Oh Susanna” in place of Oh Sugar than The Archie’s “Sugar Sugar” once this candy store really takes off. This company’s logo certainly has me praising something.

According to Rick Goodman, who runs the shop with his wife Justyna, the more exotic and stranger the candy is, the more likely this operation will carry it. I had to ask Rick about Stay Puft Marshmallows and if he could special order it for crazy clients like me. Fans of Ghostbusters know what the fuss is all about; yes, these puffy delights are caffeinated!

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