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It's hard to screw up chocolate milk. This comes close.

Friendly Farms 1% Lowfat Chocolate Milk (Aldi)

I am a huge fan of chocolate milk. And one thing is for certain: pre-made chocolate milk is best. It’s one of those things that can’t be replicated by even the best powders. (Don’t even get me started on that chocolate syrup shit.) I think the main reason is the natural thickness…the best examples are like milkshakes in a plastic container. 

Today we’ll be looking at Aldi’s attempt at pre-cartoned cocoa milk. Curiously, outside of this, their only other option for making chocolate milk is the junk syrup shit. Why don’t they also carry a powder? They taste way better than the syrups. I guess there’s not enough reason to justify it, but hey, let’s keep an endcap of mostly-repetitive energy bars and shakes.

I used to get this chocolate milk quite frequently, back when a half-gallon could consistently be scored for $.99. But those days seem to be long gone; now, they retail for around $2 and rarely drop below that. Until this latest trip, where the price was lowered to $1.33. In the past, I still wouldn’t have spent that much for a half gallon, but considering it was the lowest I’d seen in months, I set aside my pride and picked it up.

The milk is “good”, but only in the way that all chocolate milks are “good” by default. It’s one of those things that just can’t be fully screwed up. Like pizza, or donuts. Friendly Farms’ version is thinner than other brands, so it doesn’t have that rich, creamy consistency that all the best ones have. It’s also a very light shade of brown that pretty much tells you straight away that there’s not enough chocolate in there. But hey, looks can be deceiving, right?

Well, sometimes, looks aren’t deceiving: This is every bit as disappointing as it appears to be. It tastes like they made a super-strong chocolate milk, and then added water to try and dilute it. As a result, it never hits the lofty chocolate heights that most other brands provide – in fact, it never even comes close. It’s just missing that bite of chocolate that most people are going to be expecting. A good chocolate milk should be thick enough to feel like it’s coating the tongue. But this is too thin and feeble to do that. I suppose this may appeal to some who don’t like their chocolate milk super chocolatey, but I would imagine that’s a very small, redundant niche.

I still grab it occasionally during the rare instances they’re on sale, but it’s probably the worst private label chocolate milk I’ve had. 

Hey, at least it’s still better than making it with that shit chocolate syrup. (Seriously, how did that stuff get so popular?)

Overall: 5/10. Chocolate milk can’t really be screwed up, and this is no exception. However, it’s probably the worst out of the private labels that I’ve had, with a thin consistency that is barely any better than using the powder (or even – gag – the syrup). The flavor tastes almost diluted, like they made it too chocolatey and then helped to offset it by trying to add water. You know how when you eat chocolate cereal, there’s that milk left at the bottom? Yeah, it kind of looks like that…and might not even be as chocolatey. It’s drinkable, but given the fact it rarely strays from around the $2 mark, value is no longer part of its draw.

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