Review: Almond Fresh Noel Nog
We’ve been over this. Eggnog is awesome. Thick, rich, creamy and generally delicious, it’s a seasonal treat that temporarily contributes to the annual December stretching of the waistline.
We’ve examined the difference between Original, Classic and Light eggnog, and we’ve even ventured into So Nice’s soy-based Noel Nog. But this year, I found a new addition to the grocery store selection of non-dairy, non-egg pseudo nogs. I didn’t even have to hit up NEAROF’s neighbourhood Planet Organic for the stuff; it was on display in a prime end-display cooler at a Calgary Co-op, next to the other nogs.
As the So Nice Noel Nog was, to be generous, a disappointment, I’m not getting my hopes up here. If it’s good, great. If it’s not, there’s less than a litre of it to pour down the toilet.
The Pitch: “A creamy, delicious blend of traditional egg nog flavours and real almonds, Almond Fresh Noel Nog brings home the holidays with a refreshing, nutritious twist.” Also: “Source of 9 essential nutrients.” Also: “Rich & delicious dairy & egg free holiday nog Fortified almond beverage.”
The Look: A plastic bottle much like the So Nice Noel Nog bottle. Even though it’s made in Canada, it’s not an even litre; instead, it’s a 946 mL bottle, which is 1 U.S. quart. If the packaging were halls, I’d call it decked, with a couple of bows, some holly and a bilingual “happy holidays – joyeuses fêtes” around the neck. Ho, ho, ho.
The Taste: Slimy, thin, and with a harsh, dusty, powdery nutmeg character that gets in the way of other flavours. Strange, overly sweet notes made me think there was an artificial sweetener in there, but the ingredients list didn’t reveal anything of the sort. The mouthfeel is off-putting. It has no body, yet it slides around the tongue in a slick, slippery way.
RATINGS AND DETAILS
Cost: $3.49 for a 946 mL bottle at Calgary Co-op.
Value for cash money: Nope. The two-litre cartons of Dairyland Original eggnog were on sale for the same $3.49 price tag.
Availability: Better grocery stores.
Nutrition?: Per 1 cup (250 mL): 100 calories, 3.5 grams of fat, 90 mg of sodium, 1 gram of fibre, 1 gram of protein. But a whole heap of other fortified vitamin stuff. Too numerous to mention here, so I snapped a picture.
The verdict: Another Noel Nog that doesn’t stack up. I can’t see the allure. I’d rather chew a Lactaid tablet and opt for a glass of real egg nog, thanks.