The overall rating of a review is different from a simple average of all individual ratings.
Share this review on
The 24 hour One-Stop down the road from us is shut now for two weeks while they refurbish, but just before they closed they were selling all their fresh produce at 50-75% off. Aha, I thought, a golden opportunity for some bargains.
And so I came across The Big J's Smoothie Smile, Blueberry and Raspberry flavour. It came at the satisfying price of 75 English pence, and proved to be satisfying to the end.
'The Big J' was formed in the late 90s by Josephine Carpenter, a teetotaller with a love of mixed juice drinks. This love was apparently born from a childhood enjoyment of whisking random ingredients to make strange smoothie concoctions. How this resulted in a company producing a drink like this (with none of the eggs cited on the website as present in the experiments of youth), I'll never know, but good seems to have come of it.
This particular smoothie contains nothing but fruit and fruit juice (from concentrates), so appears pretty healthy. The label states that it contains 2 of your '5-a-day' servings.
Crushed berries 40% (blueberries 23%, raspberries 17%), crushed bananas, apple juice, orange juice, passion fruit juice (pure apple, orange and passion fruit juice from concentrates).
This particular sample came in a 330ml plastic bottle with a screw-cap lid. The bottle was of a standard shape and had no unnecessary sproutings of extra plastic. The label was simple and easy to understand, with blueberries and raspberries pictured in the background and the product name in large, easy to read lettering on the front. Serving directions, ingredients, nutritional information and other information were printed on the reverse. Although, nutritional information was listed as 'nutrition information', which I think reads a bit strangely.
NB: The packaging shown in the picture is not the same packaging as the bottle I purchased.
The Smoothie Smile Blueberry and Raspberry smoothie is a thick, almost grainy liquid derived from various fruits, so the texture is satisfying and feels like a smoothie should. The lack of ice-cream, found in fresh smoothies, takes away slightly from that, but the hitherto unexpected presence of banana makes up for that somewhat.
I felt the colour was slightly off-putting with its deep purple shade, bringing to mind a cross between steak and kidney (raw), but that's just a matter of personal preference.
The initial taste I found to be a little tart, and I don't mean in a cheeky, short-skirted way. I was slightly hesitant of continuing, with a slight bitterness left in my mouth.
But pressing on was the order of the day. The next mouthful reassured my senses and revealed a depth of flavours and a good balance of slightly bitter and much softer fruit. Before drinking I had no idea there was banana involved, but reading the ingredients explained the balance nicely, and the bottle of drink continued to delight all the way to the end.
So much so that I found myself walking down the street with my head held back, the last drips tumbling the three or four inches between the upturned neck of the bottle and my expectant tongue.
I would be happy to recommend The Big J's Smoothie Smile, Blueberry and Raspberry flavour, but should point out that I've not tasted any of their alternatives and so can only do so with this specific product.
It refreshed me on a warm day and removed that horrible dry feeling left after brushing teeth at midday. Admittedly, full price (£1.49) is quite steep for 330ml of drink, but I'd still recommend at least giving it a go. In comparison to the kings of the market, such as Innocent and PJ's it does lack somewhat, but if you're looking for a change or you happen to see a bargain, give it a try.
The website is at www.smoothiesmile.com, so if you'd like to see the full range available or want more information on the company, get visiting.