The great folks at Cheerwine took me seriously enough to send over a 20 ounce bottle of Cheerwine (the original) as well as their limited edition Cheerwine Kreme. That’s the one I was most interested in because it walks the delicate tightrope of genius/insanity. These brands have collaborated before, but it went the other way. Krispy Kreme made a doughnut filled with Cheerwine flavored filling…sounds okay. This time around Cheerwine created a soda flavored with a bit of Krispy Kreme doughnut. Now we’re talking!
I’m sure I tried Cheerwine at some point in my life, but I don’t remember it. They’re based out of North Carolina and are pretty popular in BBQ country (the South). Seemed like a perfect time to refresh my memory. After making sure that the bottles were well chilled I poured a glass of the original.
I expected this to be way too sweet and similar to cough medicine. Surprisingly, the cherry flavor wasn’t cloying or medicinal. I found it pretty smooth and enjoyable. The only other flavor I could pick out was vanilla, but as it’s not listed as an ingredient it may or may not actually be present. I’d be willing to bet that the caffeine content adds the bit of a kick that you feel towards the drink’s finish. It’s a pretty color, it went down easy, and it’s something that I could see myself drinking even if someone hadn’t mailed it from Charleston. Reminds me a bit of Cherry Vanilla Dr. Pepper with less of an edge. I’ll hand it a 7 out of 10 which is a pretty high mark for a non-boutique soda.
Honestly, the Cheerwine Kreme had me torn. Seemed like a coin flip whether it would be a complete train-wreck or an interesting experiment.
Turns out it was the latter. It mostly tastes like Cheerwine, but the final third of the drink evolves into a very familiar sweet/yeasty flavor that could easily pass as a raised glazed doughnut. It’s a hint of Krispy Kreme, which is enough to pull off the idea. I enjoyed it. Did I enjoy it more than the original Cheerwine? Hard to say. Ultimately, I gave them both 7’s and called it good. An ordinary beverage reviewer would have stopped there and called it a day…but not this guy. I had to take things a step further.
That’s right. I made the Do-It-Yourself version of Cheerwine Kreme. You can check out the result on my YouTube channel, or just click on the embedded post below:
Thanks again to Cheerwine for being good sports and helping me make this review happen. If you haven’t already, please sign up for email notifications so that you know when I post a new review. Or, follow my facebook page. Or my twitter.