Wild Poppy Blood Orange Chili Juice (Reviewing a product that’s not ours!)

It’s an exciting day at the Marx Foods office when somebody sends us samples.  Today is particularly exciting because they’re samples of goodies made with our products!

Wild Poppy is a California organic juice company that’s looking to take your Snapple-weary taste buds on exciting culinary journeys they’ve never experienced before.  Their flavors include Plum Licorice, Peppermint Lemonade, Grapefruit Ginger, and the flavor they were kind enough to send us: Blood Orange Chili (made with our dried Organic Habaneros).

In typical Marx Foods review fashion, we’ve decided to do a dual review of the product, so you get two distinct points of view.  Today our reviewers are Katie W. (Contest Queen, Social Media Maven & She Who Gets Things Done) and our food writer, Matthew.

Katie’s Review

The Wild Poppy Blood Orange Chili juice is sweet upon the first taste, but the heat from the habanero peppers kicks in to give your mouth a warm heat that lingers a while. The heat is not at all overwhelming, it’s actually a pleasant sensation to go along with the blood orange flavor. This juice has a great unexpected kick that sets it apart from the rest of the bottled juice crowd.

Matthew’s Review

Blood oranges rank up there with vanilla, yuzu & elderflower as one of my all-time favorite flavors.  I’m less wild about dishes with a lot of heat.  I like my food to have kick, but it needs to be part of a harmonious flavor profile, not just hot for the sake of being hot.  When Justin handed me a bottle of blood orange chili juice, I was skeptical…was pairing the two in juice a good new direction or a gimmick?

Your first sip of Blood Orange Chili starts out sweet and citrusy.  By itself, this first note would probably be too sweet, but following right behind it is a wave of spicy habanero that keeps it from getting cloying.  That heat is warming & invigorating.  It’s quite strong, but it won’t have you panting.  Take another sip, and you’ll find that sweet-citrus start blends brilliantly into the residual heat, smoothing it out nicely before delivering another installment of your chile fix.

It’s a well-crafted, nicely balanced juice that takes two very bold flavors and makes them meet in the middle with delicious results.  It makes me very interested to try their other flavors, and I’d particularly recommend this one if you’re in to spicy food.

Update: Additional Juices

The folks at Wild Poppy sent us their other flavors to check out, here are Matthew’s thoughts:

Plum Licorice
After tasting the blood orange chili, I was expecting the plum licorice flavor to have a pretty hefty licorice/anise aspect to its flavor.  This juice actually tastes most strongly of plum, with the licorice blending into the plum flavor.  I think it’s adding depth, giving the plum more character, but you’d have a hard time picking it out as a separate layer of flavor.

In short, if you hate licorice, you have nothing to fear here…but if you’re a big licorice fan and are hoping for strong anise with your plums, you may be disappointed.

Regardless, it’s still delicious plum juice – sweet, musky, and a little tart.  The color is beautiful and the sweetness is well balanced.

Note: at this time the plum licorice flavor is not organic.

Peach Vanilla
The aroma of this juice is worth the price of admission alone – smooth, creamy, peachy-vanilla.  The juice’s actual flavor is a blend of tangy peach and creamy vanilla.  Unlike the Plum Licorice juice both elements are quite strong.  It’s good, but was a tad too sweet for my tastes (probably due to the vanilla accentuating the agave nectar).

Grapefruit Ginger
This juice would be better named Ginger Grapefruit.  The ginger is really the star of the show, with the grapefruit playing tart backup.  This juice is quite spicy (though not as spicy as the Blood Orange juice).  At first I thought it was rather harsh, but the more sips I take, the more I like it.  If you like spicy ginger beer, you’ll probably like this juice.

Peppermint Lemonade
This juice tastes like a star mint/candy cane dipped in lemon juice – mostly peppermint, bitter, a little tart, and sweet at the end.  Honestly, I didn’t care for it. I like the idea of pairing mint & lemonade, but perhaps a more mild spearmint would be better.  Some tweak that made it lemonade with mint, not peppermint-ade with lemon.

Editors Note:  To each his own.  I (Justin) thought that the peppermint lemonade was on point.  I loved the minty note to the lemonade.

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