This week, I decided to try out the other bottle of Vita Frute Cocktails by Veev, the Lemonade version, that I had bought at my local CVS store. What can I say that hasn’t already been said from my other review? Honestly, not a whole lot.
Imagine for a moment that you’re sipping on a tasty lemonade. (Wait a minute, you say. Didn’t I just read this from another review on a different liquor? Yes. yes you did. It’s this one by Deep Eddy Lemonade flavored vodka). You know the kind. It’s the one that your mom always made every summer: sweet but not overtly so, tangy but not terribly tarty, and cool and refreshing. Now take that same wonderful experience of sipping on tasty lemonade and add in a musky, bitter flavor of lemon and lime rind into it. That’s quite literally what Vita Frute Cocktails Lemonade tastes like. It tastes great up until your swallow it and it goes down the gullet. It’s the point just before you do the swallow that you taste that lemon and lime rind flavor. So if you’ve ever experienced the taste of lemon (or lime) rind, like say, taking an entire piece of lemon peel in your mouth and chomping down on it, that’s what it tastes like. But unlike chomping on lemon peel, which tends to linger, drinking Vita Frute Cocktails Lemonade isn’t like that. It doesn’t linger. But you do taste it, if only briefly, before it goes down the gullet.
Onto the positives about this ready-to-drink cocktail: it doesn’t burn on entry. Nor does it burn when it goes down the gullet. Same as the Margarita version made by the company. There’s a perfectly good reason why the labeling on the bottle itself tells you to pour this over ice. And that’s because the rind flavor is really, really apparent, if you try to drink this at room temperature. Or neat, in this case. I really don’t recommend that you drink this neat. This is definitely one of those bottles of booze that you don’t want to drink neat and I drink almost anything that I haven’t yet tried, neat. I do that because I want to taste, like actually taste, the contents of the bottle to see what “it’s all about,” you know what I mean? That way, I can have a benchmark from which to judge this bottle on its own before I start comparing this to other liquors I’ve drank before. So unless you particularly like the flavor of rind swishing around in your mouth, I would strongly suggest that you drink this with plenty of ice. Better yet, chill the bottle beforehand for at least 24 hours, and shake it up real good before you serve this on the rocks.
In addition to that, like the Margarita version, it’s not syrupy at all. The mouth feel is not thick. It’s pretty smooth on the whole, except when you taste the rind flavor. The sweetness of the agave does not overpower the tequila that’s infused with the all-natural lemon juice that the labeling mentions. The bad news? When you first crack open the bottle, you can really smell the musky, bitter lemon rind smell, which, depending on how you want to look at it, can be a good thing or a bad thing. So if you hate the taste and smell of alcohol, I suppose it could be a good thing. Otherwise, you might not like it when the whiff of lemon rind is quite strong. If you’re thinking that this smells like one of those lemon-flavored air fresheners that come in a spray can or one of those dry and passive air fresheners like the little tree that you hang on your car rearview mirror or something similar that you would place in your bathroom and behind the toilet, this DOES NOT smell like that. It is quite literally a musky flavor of lemon rind. Me personally? I don’t find that particularly pleasant but I guess, relatively speaking, it beats smelling pure alcohol, which itself, is equally as bad but for different reasons.
Some final notes, DO NOT add carbonated water or club soda to this thinking that it will mellow out the flavor. It won’t. If anything, the carbonation really brings out the harshness of the tequila and makes the lemon rind flavor a lot more apparent. This is true when it’s drunk neat or with ice. It just kicks you in the nose almost like eating wasabi minus the burning sensation you feel in your sinuses and nose afterward. This is also true with energy drinks (I personally used RockStar Sugar Free [the white can] and a regular RockStar [the black can] ), whether the regular sugar version or the sugar free version. Adding a sugar substitute, like a Sweet and Low, into this with ice is another bad idea. Don’t do it. I would imagine that other sugar substitutes like Splenda and Equal would have an equally terrible effect on this drink. The sugar substitute really, really heightens the rind flavor and brings out the harshness of the tequila. And for the first time ever, I can taste the metallic flavor of Sweet and Low, when it’s mixed with Vita Frute Cocktails Lemonade over ice. That one caught me off guard. I didn’t really expect that to happen. In any case, avoid doing that, if you have plans to mix them up using those ingredients.
Interesting thing to note here, in addition to the above mixing failures, I tried mixing about 1.5 oz of Gran Legacy Vodka with about 2 oz of Vita Frute Cocktail Lemonade over ice and the harshness and god awful flavor of the lemon rind actually subsides quite a bit. It’s still there, no doubt, but it’s a lot less apparent than if you drink this over ice by itself.
All things considered, like my previous review, unless you’re particularly health conscious, or diet conscious, I wouldn’t really recommend buying this. As before, if you had to buy it, get it for the novelty factor. And get it only when it goes on sale. This bottle, like the other one, is definitely not worth it at retail price, even if it is under $20.