While our bona fides as America’s Favorite Soda Blog(tm) have never once been in ill dispute, we here at tehben.com aren’t ones to back down from a real challenge. We’ve tried every possible fucking iteration of Mountain Dew that has ever existed. We’ve sampled sodas from the far reaches of the globe. We’ve even mixed up some ugly ass cocktails that were fucking terrible.
We love soda here at tehben.com, but as the founder and current Editor in Chief, I’ve been trying my hardest to shed some extra pounds that may/may not be the end result of mainlining Coca Cola and turkey gravy directly into my veins for several decades. I even started a blog series to document my trials of cutting out sugar and soda. Truth be told, I haven’t updated that in a long time because a) an unemployed pandemic happened and b) I plateaued once reaching 212 pounds, so any updates past that point are, well, kinda boring. But I’m happy to say that despite not reaching my beach dad bod goals, I’m 95% soda free still. I will enjoy one every couple of weeks just to feel the joy that comes from my heart literally spinning around at 5,000 RPM inside in my chest. If you didn’t follow along with me on my weight loss journey, I kicked sugar in the dick by substituting my soda intake with seltzers, as there’s hundreds to pick from these days.
But which seltzers suck? Which ones got the mad flavor?
…and most importantly..
…which can be used as mixers?
Here’s Tehben.com’s TOP 7 SELTZERS!
7) Safeway Soleil Pineapple Coconut
If you like pina coladas and taking wet dumps in the rain, this seltzer might just be the bee’s testes. It’s light, bubbly, and refreshing and can take the edge off the hottest of days. Both the coconut and pineapple work together to give just the right amount of flavor backed by an intense level of carbonation. Cons: these are sold as packs of 8 in thin 10 oz cans (like Red Bull). This is literally just 5 cents worth of water in tiny little cans (sorry, Earth!). On the plus side, these are only available at Safeway so you will get to experience what shopping inside an empty/haunted grocery store feels like.
6) AHA Grapefruit Tangerine
AHA is owned and distributed by PepsiCo, which can explain the vast amount of advertising dollars being thrown at promoting this product. I’ve seen AHA billboards, AHA bus benches, AHA YouTube product placement and AHA branded condoms. This shit’s fucking everywhere. But despite offering a couple of gross flavors, these are, for the most part, all pretty solid. AHA Grapefruit Tangerine takes my favorite fruit and props up the bitterness with some tangerine zing, making this refreshing as cutting up some fresh fruit into some cold water. It’s the best grapefruit-based offering from any of the seltzer companies by far (which is saying a lot since all 400 other seltzer brands have a grapefruit version). As a postscript, to date AHA brand condoms still have yet to be sampled.
5) Good N’ Gather (Target brand) Cucumber Mint
Target might be where the 2020 Gathering of the Karens might be taking place, but they also have their own store brand seltzer brand! When served ice cold, this particular can of delicious vegetable based seltzer can instantly freeze your brain. Crisp as a knife blade, the cucumber flavor stands out while being accentuated by the icy mint undertones that finish with each sip. I will admit I am not the biggest fan of cucumber and I fucking hate pickles with every fiber of my being, but for some reason I just cannot get enough of this flavor. If you need to step out into the summer heat at any point during the summer of 2020 (god be with ye) be sure to bring along a cold can of G&G Cucumber Mint to keep yourself from melting in the sweltering summer heat like the nazis did when they opened the Ark of the Covenant.
4) Lime Bubli
Lime is a pretty tame choice by nature, and it’s another staple seltzer flavor. This is the only offering from Bubli on the list since Bubli has a special knack for having 30 different choices of flavors that barely taste like anything. The lime version of Bubli hits hard and refreshing (boy, can’t wait to see how many times I have to use a thesaurus to find new words for “refreshing” in this article) and helps to cool you off quickly. It is also very thirst-quenching, and it will always be my go-to in the grocery store (they are sold in tall singles) whenever the summer heat looks unbearable outside. Lime Bubli tastes a little like a neutered 7Up, but would probably taste pretty damn good mixed with a little vodka on the rocks topped off with a twist of lime as well!
3) Simple Truth Organic (Kroger) Orange Vanilla
On the surface, this one sounds kind of weird, but it’s just following in the footsteps of the latest Coke Freestyle favorite. This is also another seltzer that’s sold in smaller cans, but for what it lacks in overall volume, it makes up in taste. This seltzer will hit the spot whenever you are craving a 480 calorie Orange Coke, so it’s always a good idea to keep these on hand for whenever them soda cravings hit. This is also an absolutely killer mixer when paired with the Summer Edition Captain Morgan’s (sorry, Nelson!) This is the perfect day drink for homebound summer activities like mowing the lawn in sandals or getting fucking obliterated in the kiddie pool.
2) La Croix Cucumber Blackberry Curate
While its trying it’s hardest to sound exotic, “Curate” is just the French word for the most exotic of all of the vegetables, the… cucumber. This stuff is phenomenal and I could not stop drinking these with an entire refrigerator of other options ripe for the picking. It has a deliciously fun cucumber base that is accented by a playfully tart blackberry finish. It would probably be the top dog on this list, except for the fact I’ve only seen it in stores twice and never again. If you ever see La Croix Blackberry Curate out in the wild, would you be a dear and pick up a case for yourself and seven or eight cases for me? Seriously, this shit is the bomb and I have money.
1) AHA Peach and Honey
This is my hands-down favorite of all the seltzers, and I always keep a safety stock of 4 cases on hand in my room at all times. I already have a soft spot for peach flavored stuff, so when this base flavor is paired with the subtle hint of honey, it really shines through. It’s refreshing, clean, and has an overwhelming (which is a good thing in a world of bland-ass seltzers) peach flavor that will have you putting those gummi peach rings back on the rack at 7-11. This fizzy drink also mixes well with a variety of spirits. While vodka is a worthwhile option, this makes a tasty Bourbon and Branch when mixed with a crappy whiskey (i.e. my entire liquor cabinet). If you choose to mix AHA Honey Peach with a honey whiskey, you can make a version of Southern Comfort that won’t end with you getting arrested.
I hope my handy little guide helps you to pick the best seltzer from the rack at your local supermarket, saving you some time, money and effort! Seltzer is a great way to cut some of those empty calories out of your diet, and can also help you train for the White Claw Olympics.
Honorable mention for the weirdest:
As far as weird goes, I was initially going to go with La Croix Hi-Biscus! flavored seltzer because it tastes like those things they put around your neck after exiting the plane in Hawaii. As strange as it tasted, the floral bouquet actually became endearing after a few cans. However, I did find something even more disturbing…
La Croix Lemoncello! When I bought it, I had no idea what the fuck a limoncello is (and still don’t), but I would like to wager a limoncello is something you mix with plaster to make Le Bondo. If I had to describe it, I would say that it tastes like KFC lemon parfait coated in potato flour. It’s got a really strange mouthfeel and it’s really hard to drink. I have had this twelve pack of this crap for three months and I can’t even give these things away. In a pinch, a can of La Croix Lemoncello makes for a great ranged melee weapon as long as you make sure to throw it away as soon as the threat is over.
Teh Ben is a semi-professional seltzer tester and is currently saving up for one of those giant grinders so he can finally make some milk money off YouTube. Until then, be sure to swing by his divisive Twitter feed, his Instagram, or his grinder-free YouTube channel.
The orange vanilla is great with a splash of whiskey and a bit of ginger beer – highly recommend! Also worth noting is the peach-pear flavor La Croix, great solo or with a splash of whiskey. Those are my recs!