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I don't think half these ingredients are really necessary....

Good & Smart Citrus Sunshine Super Smoothie (Dollar General)

Many readers have left concerned comments regarding Good & Smart’s 7 Super Fruit beverage blend; namely, that it’s being discontinued. I have not been able to confirm or deny this (I usually don’t ask Dollar General associates anything), but I also haven’t seen any on the shelves the last couple times I went. Either word has spread about how good they are, or all those rumors are turning out to be true.

Well, on my latest trip to the fake dollar store, I found bottles of “Citrus Sunshine Super Smoothie”. I purchased it thinking it could serve as further evidence the 7 Super Fruit juice was being phased out by a new drink. However, as it turns out, I already had taken a photo of this juice last August. I had planned on reviewing it then, but never got around to it, then never saw it since. Isn’t it nice when things come around full circle?

The juice somewhat lives up to the name based on appearance alone. While I wouldn’t say it’s as bright as the actual sun, it does share similar shades of orange. It also looks pretty citrusy, which is an appealing trait to me: I love citrus fruits.

An initial whiff reveals that this drink is aiming to be healthy. It has that odd aroma that’s typically found in cold-pressed and other “fresh” juices. You know what I mean: mostly sweet, but with hints of “not”. Like someone attempted to use a juicer with leftover vegetable bits in it, or something. It’s not a bad smell, but it also doesn’t paint any type of accurate picture as to what one can expect from the flavor.

Texturally, it’s…chunky. This is an absolutely odd consistency that I can’t recall coming from another smoothie. My wife says it feels like baby food. I initially disregarded that – she’s made that claim about other drinks before – but truth be told, I haven’t been able to shake it since. This is no doubt due to the inclusion of chia seeds, which always seem to add a weird, slightly “slimy” texture. It gives the impression that if you were to tip the bottle over, it would fall out in chunks, instead of pouring out like a liquid.

The taste is…rather interesting, as you can expect from a drink that not only combines juices from 7 different fruits, but also tosses in some turmeric. It’s an odd mixture on paper, and an equally odd mixture in execution. Initially, it’s very sweet. Actually, I’d say overall it somehow manages to be very sweet. But the turmeric counterattacks it with a slight tinge of pepperiness that takes it into unexpected territory. The question is, is that detour necessary? Not really, but it’s also not so strong that it becomes pungent. 

I do not have a refined palate capable of picking out specific flavors. I think I notice “mango” the most, but that’s probably because it’s the strongest fruit of the lot. “Carrot” also seems to factor in quite a bit. These observations are with the benefit of having an ingredients list in front of me; in a blind taste test I’m not sure I’d be able to detect any of the specific fruits. But really, all that matters is the combination as a whole. And it’s a pretty weird taste. One that certainly won’t appeal to everyone. 

But with each 8 oz. bottle retailing for a mere $1, there’s not a lot of investment required to find out if it’s the right drink for you. Is it another resounding win for the Good & Smart beverage lineup? Not quite; in fact, it’s easily the least impressive one I’ve tried. But it’s still a good value and worth picking up if you want to try something new. 

Or if it’s the only one available because the better flavors have either sold out, or been discontinued.

Overall: 5.5/10. This is a weird combination of sweet, peppery and chunky that doesn’t feel entirely necessary. The juice foundation itself is sweet and very drinkable on its own. So then why did anyone feel the need to add chia seeds and/or turmeric? Why do random spices, or seeds, or shrubbery have to be added to juices in order to make them “healthy” these days? Whatever the case, the $1 price tag (per 8.12 oz. bottle) provides some solid value. And the fact that it’s 100% juice is also another impressive “win”. It could have been a lot better, but what’s here is good enough to recommend, with some reservations.

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