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Another fantastic shot from Tweaker.

Tweaker Pomegranate Energy Shots (Circle K)

It’s no surprise that I am a fan of the Tweaker line. How could I not be? They offer up arguably the best tasting shots on the market, and for a surprising price: $1.99. That might not be the cheapest shot on the market, but it is notable for one reason: these are sold almost exclusively in convenience stores. You know, the places that typically upcharge on everything in the name of convenience. It’s really a smart business decision: People will try them. Especially when they’re displayed against the $3+ name brands. What is there to lose?

One thing I am disappointed in is Tweaker’s lack of transparency. I know they’re not the only company to omit caffeine content on the label, but it’s information that should be required. As with other brands, they get away with merely mentioning that each shot “contains caffeine comparable to 12 ounces of premium coffee.” What does that even mean? I don’t drink coffee, but I know there are trillions of different manufacturers, and most of them no doubt have varying amounts of caffeine. Even their own website merely states: “A fluid ounce of typical filter coffee has 18mg of caffeine. A fluid ounce of a typical Rockstar or Monster has 10mg of caffeine.” That’s it. No mention of how their shots compare to that…it’s just presented as a random factoid.

Muddying the waters even further: The USDA states that, on average, there are 11.8 mg of caffeine per brewed ounce. That puts a 12 oz. cup at around 109 mg…and I guarantee there’s more than that in these shots. How this is allowed is beyond me; it’s honestly a wonder more people don’t die from caffeine overdoses every year. You might think that’s hyperbole – after all, it would take between 50 – 100 cups of coffee to kill someone in a day – but almost nobody seems to pay attention to how much caffeine they ingest. And it might not kill them straight away, but what about its long term effects? For being classified as a drug, there’s very little awareness or discussion surrounding it. It’s baffling.

Anyway, personal annoyances aside, this is yet another solid entrant into Tweaker’s energy drink line. I was skeptical as to how they would pull off the pomegranate flavor, with other company’s attempts falling well short of capturing the mix of tart and light sweetness. Admittedly, Tweaker’s version ups the sweetness a little too much, but it comes surprisingly close to hitting the titular fruit’s tartness. Especially for not containing any fruit juice. I guess that shouldn’t be surprising given Tweaker’s other shots, which up the sourness to candy-style levels, without the medicinal aftertaste of virtually every other brand. They’re arguably the best-tasting shots on the market, at least out of the ones I’ve tried. And the fact they’re sugar free only makes the feat that much more impressive. It’s crazy to me that, in 2022, virtually every other manufacturer seems to be at least a few paces behind. (For the record, and as a counterpoint, my wife still thought they were too sweet. To each their own.)

And as for my earlier rant, it does work, no matter what the caffeine content is. The energy boost kicks in quick, lasts for a while, and dissipates without the sugar crash. I’ve found that its performance is no more or less effective than other brands I’ve tried. This means it’s nothing all that noteworthy, but it’s still good to know that it works. Since, you know, that’s the reason you’re buying it.

Overall: 8/10. The direct antithesis to Stacker, Tweaker pushes out yet another great-tasting energy shot. The $1.99 price tag might not seem all that impressive, but it is considering these are sold almost exclusively in convenience stores. You know, the places that upcharge on everything in the name of convenience? Here, the pomegranate is very tart, an accurate trait of the actual fruit. What isn’t so realistic is the sweetness that follows, but one should only expect so much from a sugar-free liquid made up of chemicals (and no actual fruit juice). As with other shots in the Tweaker line, it’s all pulled off without the medicinal aftertaste or bitter flavor of other shots. I don’t know how they do all of this, but I’m definitely glad they do. And this only continues their streak of excellence.

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