The One with the LaCroix
Savannah's Quick Sip : Part 3
This blog is dedicated to our beloved LaCroix, the sponsored (not really, although @lacroixwater, we wish it were) drink of Astra Digital. And I like to think of this popular, sparkling water line-up of flavors as a dysfunctional family – the LaCroix Family. A lineage of three young siblings and a cousin who lives with them, their mother, an aunt and uncle, and the grandmother. This concept was somehow strangely obvious to me – of COURSE Cran-Raspberry is Key Lime’s problematic nephew with a deadbeat dad, I mean who ELSE would he be?? There’s something about giving personalities to inanimate objects that’s really enjoyable… So without further adieu, I give you the lowdown on these mysterious essence-filled beverages, my officemates who have the dirt on the family of 8 dramatic flavors, and the marketing endeavors they inspire. Please welcome the LaCroixs…
I was iffy upon my first confrontation with Lime LaCroix. I’ve been scarred one too many times by lime-infused alcohol, so I was treading very lightly and avoiding her for weeks. But the time came for us to introduce ourselves, and I was pleasantly surprised. Lime is the matriarch of the LaCroixs, the Grandmother. She’s tart because of her debacle of a family, but she has to keep her beloved children and grandchildren in line, so she’s also feisty and electric. She’s the kind of grandmother who (much like a lime wedge) is often seen with a cocktail. And even though Lauren thinks Lime is “trying to be Sprite, but failing,” she is a queen, an OG.
Lemon was the first LaCroix flavor I’d ever tried about a year or two ago. I didn’t even really want her, I was just being a typical parasitic kid and pillaging my mom’s personal stash of favorite snacks and drinks. And I immediately regretted my ransacking. It tasted like when you fill your cup at McDonald’s and, unbeknownst to you, you get straight carbonated water with just a singular bubble of a ghost of flavoring. I didn’t get it.
But I have a more sophisticated palate now, and I can appreciate the refined beauty of Lemon. She’s the cougar of the LaCroix family. The stunning, 57-year-old, single aunt who sneaks the kids alcohol. The one that comes back home once a year, and when she does, the whole town knows and forgets how to act. She’s bright and classy and her can is the color of a zero-grade canary diamond. Aunt Lemon is a Hall-of-Famer for sure.
At first glance, I thought Pamplemousse sounded like an infection that only British people get. “Oi bruv, looks like y’got a spot o’ the pamplemousse!” Disgusting… But then at second glance, I realized the word Pamplemousse might be French, and my suspicion was confirmed when Constance said it’s her favorite flavor – she’s our intern from Bordeaux. (I applaud your patriotism, Constance.) Turns out pamplemousse is actually grapefruit, which is another motive for why I had my reservations. For some reason, grapefruit has been given an illusion of luxury. It’s the fruit of wealthy, minimalist people who wear a lot of white and eat half a grapefruit with a spoon for breakfast. Who the hell does that? I’ll tell you who. Psychopaths, and probably Elon Musk.
When I was younger, my Mama and Grandmama always made ambrosia during the summer to try to distract from the ungodly heat. If you don’t know, ambrosia is sort of like fruit salad, but my family makes it more like a punch and less like a gelatinous mound… Thank God. I knew I didn’t like grapefruit, but every summer I would still eat the ambrosia, foolishly convinced that it would be better this time around. It looked pretty, a colorful concoction of cherries, pineapple, and grapefruit, and my Dad always told me, “ambrosia is the nectar of the Gods.” And how could anyone argue with that? I mean just ask Eve – it’s hard to pass up well-marketed fruit.
But grapefruit aka Pamplemousse isn’t really bad, he’s just an acquired taste. Pamplemousse is the pretentious gay uncle who means well but can’t help but make underhanded remarks about Mom’s living room decor and Dad’s landscaping – and he’s undoubtedly Grandmother’s favorite. You feel kind of snobby with Pamplemousse, but you have to admit, he’s the best looking and the most bubbly of the family.
My hometown is right on the Florida-Georgia line (yep, like the horrendous band who we don’t claim), so the area is a fusion of Georgia’s soul food and swamps with Florida’s seafood and old world beaches. And we love us some Key Lime Pie. In the summer it’s a delicacy, but it has to be just the right consistency and balanced level of lime flavor – not like Jello but not like cheesecake, not too sour but not too sweet. The perfect slice of Key Lime Pie is hard to find. So when I opened the fridge one morning, I did a double-take.
Lime LaCroix, the grandmother of them all, suddenly had a splash of orange and yellow on her can. But it wasn’t Lime – it was her second daughter, Key Lime. I was immediately intrigued and figured I would have to be the judge of this ballsy dessert flavor… She was incredible – not better than Lime, just simply with a twist. She’s just as feisty, but much sweeter. The Mother of the LaCroix children. Key Lime is a worthy opponent, but she falls just short of my favorites.
I’m not a huge fan of coconut as a food. And honestly now that I think about it, it’s kind of false advertising. Coconut… nut of coco? Where is the coco flavor? WHERE. Shady, if you ask me. I’ll certainly eat coconut when given to me because I’m not a degenerate who scrapes things off my food (I would’ve gotten popped for that as a kid), but I rarely choose to order something with coconut in it. She’s one of those ingredients that’s abused by people who think they’re Thomas Keller. They just throw her into shit to make it seem more exotic. Perfectly good fudge brownies? Ruin it with some coconut so Karen at work thinks it’s a secret recipe. A classic garden salad? Make it weird with a pinch of coconut so you appear cultured and because why-the-hell-not. It’s very unnecessary to include her in such dramatics, so I had some qualms about a Coconut sparkling water.
But I’ll gladly eat my crow. Dennis, and almost everyone else in the office, says Coconut, “tastes like licking suntan lotion off of your arm.” However, I think Coconut is simply the misunderstood oldest sister of the LaCroixs. She comes off as a betch because she’s different from the rest of the standard fruit flavors, but she’s actually super cool and underrated. This drank is good – so good that if she’s pushed to the back of the shelf, I’ll take the time to play refrigerator Minecraft to reach her. Coconut is unique and fresh and definitely in my Mt. Rushmore of LaCroix family members. Inject her into my veins.
Cran-Raspberry is the teenage cousin – older than the middle brother Orange, but younger than the oldest sister, Coconut – and he’s been basically adopted and living with the LaCroix’s since he was little. Cran-Raspberry is the charming troublemaker who hates his full name and would rather go by his initials, C.R., but Grandmother Lime LaCroix refuses to call him that. He’s got sort of an identity crisis going on because he’s the combo of two very different berries, so he acts out by skipping class and stealing things from the jiffy store. And while people tend to choose other, less complicated LaCroix’s before him, at the end of the day, C.R. is actually a general favorite – Kimberly would even venture to say C.R. is, “the most flavorful. Don’t get it twisted.” A solid LaCroix choice.
Orange and Tangerine
I don’t really drink orange juice. Not because I don’t like it, but because I have killer acid reflux. Me and orange juice have a long, intimate history with trash bags in the car on the way to school and commodes in the girls’ bathroom. It’s not the healthiest relationship. Sometimes that beautiful orange elixir is worth the throat damage… however, I decided not to bless my coworkers with that situation, ever. But then the inevitable day came when Orange was all that was left on that third shelf, and I needed my fix.
So I picked up Orange and slowly sipped it. I give him 5 stars for not inflaming my esophagus, but a 2 for flavor. Truly underwhelming. Orange is the middle child and first-born son who’s supposed to be the LaCroix’s citrus protégé, but sort of just turned out to be quiet and average-looking. It’s Orange’s hotter, more exciting younger brother Tangerine that steals the show. (Sort of like when they made Godfather II – both classics, but II is just a better story and has Robert De Niro.) Tangerine is most certainly a starting 5, and maybe even in my top 2. Sorry Orange, Tangerine is just so damn refreshing – or in Abby’s words, “Zesty!” – but you have a great personality.
In Sparkling Conclusion...
And there you have the LaCroix Family. Aside from wine, LaCroix is all we drink here. We go through palettes of it every week, and throughout the day, past the typing and the soft music and the weights smacking the floor at the gym next door, you can hear the crack of cans opening – our much milder version of engines firing. We call it our fuel, our marketing juice, and it really does work for some inexplicable reason. If Astra had a Fight Club (which we obviously don’t because I’ve already violated the highest law) there wouldn’t be coffee cups strewn across the background of every scene – there would be various LaCroix cans.