Review of "Duchy Originals Lemon Refresher"

published 15/10/2003 | ElizaF
Member since : 14/08/2003
Reviews : 73
Members who trust : 99
About me :
Pro Lemony wonderfulness, not too fizzy, organic
Cons not cheap
very helpful
Value for money
Product Quality
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"Easy, easy, lemon fizzy"

DO Lemon refresher

DO Lemon refresher

Cost and availability:
Bakers of Holt - 750ml bottle. £1.95, - 750ml 2.09 - 750ml 2.09
Tescos - 750ml £1.99
Sainsburys - 750ml £1.75

The air conditioning in work is broken, really broken, the type of broken that if shot with a black and white video camera would look like a contender for the 1950’s Hollywood film noir genre. All we need is Humphrey Bogart and John Houston.

You get the idea, don’t you, in mid-July, we are hot and sweaty with all the windows open, covered by battered metal blinds throwing strange shadows all over the room.

It was out of this hothouse I stumbled at lunchtime looking for something to curb the growth of the dust-ball that had taken residence in the back of my throat - Sainsburys, it was then.
There I came across a bottle of “Duchy Originals Lemon Refresher”.

Now, I have been known to demolish 2 cans of Finches Lemon (an Irish brand) in one sitting but I find brands like Fanta and supermarket’s own too sweet, too fizzy and not lemony enough. More like sweet phish than sharp whoarrrr!

By 'lemony', I mean a drink that is so lemon-like that it makes your mouth go “ooooooh” and your left eye involuntarily shut with its sharpness

I decided I would give this Lemon refresher stuff a go as I wanted to stay true to this healthy-kick I have been on for the last few weeks. Oh yes, it had the word “Organic” on the label.

So what are Organic foods?
We are living in a complicated and interesting age in the development of organic foodstuffs. For the first time in decades since farmers began to reject putting chemical substances on their crops, now is the first time that organic produce is available for the same cost as mainstream foods.

Many ppl are going to think ‘D’oh!’ a la Homer Simpson when they see this section header. However, the simple truth is, organic foods are not simply foods left untreated with any fertilizers, pesticides or weed-killers at all. They are foods treated with substances from a list deemed acceptable by the soil association.

Of course, they are not GM (genetically modified) crops in any way shape or form. So beware of foods claiming to be treated with no pesticides or weedkillers because these foods could be ones which are modified in such a way that they don’t need to be treated to encourage growth.

British demand and interest in organic foods is growing 55% annually, according to the Soil Association. This seems to be the time of all things organic. Entire companies are set up with all their trade being in organic for food, clothes and hygiene. The Archers (a long running Radio4 afternoon drama based in a rural community) has an organic farm. Having said that, I have yet to notice an organic farmer or even a working farmer in Emmadale : )For the 1st time, the post of Professor of organic farming has been created. Dr Carlo Leifert has this research post, which will have nearly half a million invested in it over the next 3 years sponsored by the likes of Tescos and the Duchy Originals company, which leads us nicely on to:

Background to the Duchy Originals company:
Duchy Originals, when started in 1990 (my spell-checker keeps changing it to Ducky! was initially the produce of the Prince of Wales all-organic farm at Highgrove. The concept of the farm was to prove (or not) the commercial viability of organic farming and if successful, to encourage others to follow suit. I remember reading a piece in the Sun in which the Sun pilloried him as a mad plant-talker unfit to be the next king of England. 13 years later, it must take all his breeding and restraint not to come back at them with a huge “YAH-BOO-SUCKS, I was right, you were wrong, yah!!”

As if proving the profitability of organic foods were not enough, as if employing 100’s of people directly and indirectly as well as seasonal workers were not enough, the company also gives away all it’s profits to charity (the Prince of Wales charity incidentally). To date this comes to over £1.3 million.

To show how deeply the Prince and his achievements are embraced by the Organic community, the Soil association have made him their patron.

What does the bottle look like:
It has the name on a white label: “Duchy Originals Lemon Refresher” pasted onto a green bottle with a black cap. Just to leave you in no doubt about the ingredients, there is the picture of a halved lemon also in the label.

I admit that I was so thirsty I opened and drank from this bottle on the street. First and only mistake, **woof!** it is sharp. It tastes like the ultimate lemon’s fantasists dream. The carbonation is very gentle and enhances the lemon beautifully. It is not a drink that you could gulp big mouthfuls of at a go due to the sharpness of the lemon taste but therein lies its beauty, because the fruit taste is so sharp and the bubbles so small, you feel really envigoured after a few sips. I can well imagine men coming in from the fields after a hard days physical work in the sunshine and tucking into this stuff. Girlie drink, it is not!

I think in future when I know I am going to be out on my bike for a few hours, I shall make sure to have a bottle in the fridge, it is one of those drinks that really does put life into a person when they (i.e. me) are feeling a bit depleted.

The only downside to this drink (unless lemon is not to your taste) is the cost. £1.75 for ¾ of a litre is not cheap and certainly not something that could be bought every day. However on the other hand, it is cheaper than an awful lot of things that are not good for you at all!

It may also spoil the taste of all other lemon drinks for you as well. It really is that good.

Any other uses for this stuff:
Lemon and Pimms (Hard soda and girlie booze ;)

1 small cup of Pimms
2 small cups of Lemon Refresher.
1 small cup of white lemonade / soda water
As many slices of lemon, orange, apple and whatever fruit you have in the house.

Lemon and citron vodka: (Hard soda and hard booze ;)
1 small cup of Absolute citron vodka
4 small cups of Lemon Refresher
½ small cup of crushed ice

Related useful URL’s:
Manufacturer’s web site:
Portion of manufacturer’s web site dedicated to the product:

The Soil association:

Waitrose organic foodstuffs in stock

Nutritional concept’s shopping list for organic produce:

Thanks for reading
: )

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Comments on this review

  • L0BSTER_QUADRILLE published 02/03/2006
    Sounds lovely - I love uber sour/sharp drinks. x
  • bagoproverbial published 06/12/2004
    Another good review. Never been able to find this lemonade so thanks for the links.
  • jtogando published 24/08/2004
    I'm in a rush now, so I've bookmarked the web site of the Duchy Originals to see it later... Great Review, but iI don't think I can get it in Here (Portugal - Lisboa). But I'll give some advice for a friend who lives in London. Keep on ;) João Tiago
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Product Information : Duchy Originals Lemon Refresher

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Listed on Ciao since: 15/10/2003