Anger Burger

What You Call One of Them Good Problems

Posted by Sunday on Nov 17, 2011 at 12:19 am

I forgot how much having a day job rearranges your entire life.  I know, I’m punching me in the ear, too.  Nevertheless: bringing lunch to work!  Right now it’s fun, in a few days it’ll be getting old and by this time next month I’ll be eating nothing but pizza-by-the-slice and street meat.

In the meantime, I’m desperately addicted to this:

The short version is: it’s spicy juice.  The longer version is that they are sweetened, lightly flavored beverages with a smidgen of capsaicin in them, so they have a little bit of a burn.  The weirdest part is that my Crohn’s disease is not bothered in the least by it, and in fact the opposite.  I’ve been feeling pretty good lately, and the niacin-like rush of the capsaicin is no joke.

My only grief about the product is that I feel it could do with a little less sugar – while they don’t taste overly sugary, 40g per bottle is pretty much the upper limit of what I am comfortable consuming in a beverage and are what’s keeping me to one or two a week as a treat.  I guess I’m that nutbag asking them to make a sugar-free version, but there it is: some of us can’t digest sugar well and have to divvy up our sugar intake between the things we really can’t live without, like marshmallow milkshakes and bowls of Franken Berry for dinner.

November 17th, 2011 | Food Rant, Obsessed

18 Responses to What You Call One of Them Good Problems

  1. Heather D says:

    Where (in Oly I presume) are you finding this?

  2. KevinQ says:

    Have you considered adding water to cut down on the sugariness? You could turn one bottle into two drinks if you cut it 50/50 with water.

    I started doing that with soda, and now it’s the only way I can drink it. The initial downside is that your body expects a certain amount of viscosity when it thinks it’s getting soda, and diluting it plays with your body’s expectations. As long as you’re prepared, I think it’s tastier.

    And look! Evidence that things are tastier if you add water:


    • Sunday says:

      It actually wasn’t the flavor of the sugar that bothered me as much as the gram count – it’s the same as a can of Coca-Cola. I did get used to watering down fruit juices, though, and now most of them taste much, much too sweet and thick to me.

    • Kristina says:

      Doh! Why have I not done this before? I have lots of sparkling water, so it wouldn’t cut the fizzy element down if I diluted with sparkling soda. DONE! Thanks, Kevin.

      • KevinQ says:

        Self-serve machines are great at restaurants for doing this, but the fun comes in trying to explain this to the counter workers.

        “Right, see that little lever that says ‘soda water?’ Use that to fill it up half way… yes, I know there’s no syrup…”


        • Kristina says:

          Well to date I’ve usually asked for 1/2 regular and 1/2 diet so it has some flavor, but less actual sugar. Albeit the artificial isn’t much better. That way it’s at least 50% less calories. This usually gets a surprised expression and a “I never thought of that!” Now I can use just the soda water. Thanks again.

  3. Joel says:

    I try to avoid sugar to the greatest extent possible…overweight (although I’m on a severe downward trend) and border-line diabetic.

    Ingredients: filtered water, organic evaporated cane juice (AKA sugar), organic lemon juice concentrate, natural pomegranate, black pepper flavor, sea salt, capsaicin extract.

    No reason at all you can’t make this at home, using stevia instead of sugar. (Even if you taste an aftertaste in stevia, this drink will without doubt drown it out. I used to not be able to use stevia because of the aftertaste, but something changed, either the product or my taste, and now I use it in everything.) You could get black pepper flavor by making a black pepper tea then straining it. The only thing I don’t have in my kitchen is the capsaicin extract…but I found it at Amazon. ( (There’s another version, but this one is in alcohol instead of oil, and oil would have trouble integrating in a drink.)

    I’ve just ordered the extract so that I can try this myself. The idea of a sweet/sour/spicy drink sounds VERY interesting. And the comments on Amazon claim that capsaicin extract is good for weight loss, something I guess I was aware of but hadn’t been thinking about.

    • Sunday says:

      I switched over to sweetening beverages with stevia about a year ago, and I like the Stevia in the Raw brand the best, as far as residual flavor goes. But that thing happened where I don’t taste it any more. I make my tea with stevia and soy milk, and to me it just tastes like a cup of tea now.

      It’s funny that you mention making it at home, becuase when I was a teenager a friend of mine used to make us what she called “sickie tea,” which was honey, lemon juice, anise seed, powdered ginger and cayenne pepper. I got very used to drinking it when I had a head cold.

      Capsaicin absolutely gives me energy, so it doesn’t surprise me that people suggest it as an aid to weight loss. I always joked that I’d be a chili head if it weren’t for this stupid colon that hates when I give it chilies, but I can eat as much wasabi and capsaicin as I want because they aren’t suspended in oil, and break down high in the digestive tract.

  4. Joel says:

    Okay, just realized I read the above link wrong…it’s “alcohol-free”, not “in alcohol”. I’m guessing most capsaicin extract is in oil, and I’m a little afraid of it floating and giving me a concentrated dose. I may just try mixing in some cayenne powder into the drink and let it steep.

    • Sunday says:

      Yeah, that wouldn’t work, though someone with some chemistry knowledge might be able to suggest something additional to add that can integrate an oil into a water. Or Google. Either one.

  5. Joel says:

    I think I did it. Of course, I haven’t consumed the original, but what I made was quite nice. Smooth, sweet, lemon-pomegranate, not too strong, with a bite that doesn’t hit until about ten seconds later.

    I just made an infusion of black and cayenne pepper, then filtered it. Came out quite dark, actually. I do suspect that the oils are going to float to the top, but it’s not so strong that it’ll feel like its killing me if I don’t get it entirely mixed before imbibing.

    • Sunday says:

      That’s so excellent! You’ve totally inspired me to make my own concoction, too. Next time I get to the store I’ll pick up pomegranite juice and go from there.

  6. meg says:

    Those things are really delicious. When I worked at a health food store I got kind of hooked. A little sweet, a little burn. Perfect for afternoon doldrums.

  7. Joel says:

    I think I found the perfect pepper for this, but….it’s pretty expensive. has a Cayenne Tincture that mixes easily into drinks. A single dropper in a quart of lemon-pomegranate makes a wonderful drink.

    Incidentally, that site has the best and strongest herbal remedies I’ve ever run across…everything just plain works!

  8. Vita says:

    I’m pretty sure the idea of adding heat to fizzy water drink is the best thing ever! I want to try this now!

  9. Joel says:

    Okay, that url I gave above for the Cayenne Tincture works really well. The pepper tincture is super hot so you only need a little, but it’s also expensive. So, I made my own. I just decanted my second batch and am straining it now. The first batch I made from every hot pepper in the Asian store, but it turned out to be weak enough that I had to use enough to get the heat I wanted that the flavor of the various peppers ruined the drink. The second batch I made with pure habanero, which is the hottest pepper I have access to. Not only is this second batch hotter, but the flavor is better. Not as hot as that pepper tincture at the link above, but hot enough to be useful.

    Directions: Get enough habanero or hotter pepper to fill a quart jar about 2.5 times. Wash and cut the stems off, dump into a food processor, process until very fine. Dump into a quart jar…should be about 2/3 full. Fill the rest of the way with vodka or white vinegar. Seal and let sit in the dark for at least a month. Strain out the liquid, and add to any drink you want. (Try it in hot chocolate for Aztec version!)

    I’m enjoying stevia-sweetened lemonade with a pepper kick right now, and it’s yummy!

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