Lacroix: Repulsive or Revolutionary?

Lacroix is a rather controversial beverage, and I decided to taste test them to determine why they attract so much attention.


Madi Hermyer

Lime Lacroix, the biggest offender to my taste buds, was unsweet and overly fizzy. Some other flavors, however, were less of a disappointment.

In all my experience with odd fascinations, I have never seen a more heated fixation than the faces in a room when they hear the sound of a can opening, then realizing it’s a Lacroix. I have also yet to meet someone who has a gray area opinion of Lacroix, only extreme love and hatred for the beverage. According to their website, Lacroix makes “naturally essenced sparkling water,” but it’s been ridiculed and bullied like the nerd girl in a 90’s teen drama, being called names like “liquid TV static”, “leftover bath bomb water”, and “satan juice.” What stirs up such strong emotions in one’s heart whenever Lacroix is brought up? What is it about the drink that makes people feel the way they do? To answer these questions, I conducted a taste test where I tried three flavors of Lacroix (pamplemousse, lime, cran-raspberry) and graded them on three things: flavor accuracy and fizziness factor. Here’s what I found:

I tried the pamplemousse flavor not knowing what to expect, especially since I didn’t even know what a pamplemousse was. From the second I cracked open the can, I detected a strong smell that was like every fruit in existence rolled into one (cool to smell, not very helpful in discerning what the mystery fruit was). During the first sip, flavor was masked by overwhelming carbonation, so it took me a few more sips to pick up on a flavor. Once the fizziness died down a bit, it just tasted like a pinch of a red Gusher dissolved in water, minus the sweetness, giving me little help with flavor discretion. Not the worst thing I have ever tasted, but in all honesty I do not think I would have ever picked up a can of it, if not for the sake of this review. After the tasting, I Googled what a pamplemousse was, and learned it’s a type of grapefruit, which surprised me because it was not very sour. I decided to rate this Lacroix 1 out of 5 stars for flavor accuracy, 4 out of 5 stars for fizziness factor, and 2.5 stars for overall enjoyment.

Next up was lime, which I was really excited to taste because key lime is my favorite Lacroix of all time. It’s not too fizzy, tastes like a key lime pie, and has no weird aftertaste. Plain lime, however, was a huge disappointment. Unlike its cousin key lime, from the second I cracked open the can, bubbles started sizzling like it was a drinkable jacuzzi. The first sip was 99% fizz and felt like a thousand really angry people punching your tongue at once. The remaining one percent was just sourness, making for a very undesirable first sip. As I drank more and more, the overwhelming fizziness washed away, and I was able to taste more of the lime flavor. This Lacroix did actually taste like lime, but I’m so accustomed to lime being in sweet things (key lime pie, cherry limeade) that just plain, sour lime was gross to me. Lime earned 5 stars for flavor accuracy, 5 stars for fizziness factor, and 1 star for overall enjoyment.

Now it was time for the last flavor, Cran-Raspberry. After the mediocracy of the last two flavors, I was ready to taste something good for a change. I was also mentally preparing myself to open the can and be overwhelmed by fizz, but this had the same carbonation level as a regular can of coke, which was a good sign that I’d actually be able to taste the drink at the first sip. When I first tasted it, I noticed that the fizz to flavor ratio was 50/50, meaning I was able to get a feel for the flavor which had sweetness as well as taste. Another good thing I noticed was a fresh raspberry flavor with a little bit of cranberry which was not too overpowering but still noticeable. To my delight, this Lacroix tasted like a sparkling water with fruity flavoring, not a carbonated explosion with notes of battery acid. I think that if given the choice, I would actually ingest this bad boy again. I gave Cran-Raspberry 2 stars for fizziness factor, 5 stars for flavor accuracy, and 5 out of 5 stars for overall enjoyment.

But the question still stands: why is Lacroix so controversial? My personal hypothesis is this: people expect it to be sweet, and then it is not. It took me about 40 sips or so before I became accustomed to the bitter flavor of the drinks. I saw a carbonated beverage in a can with colorful packaging and my mind expected it to taste like a soda, and when it did not, I was legitimately angry. At the end of the day, my advice would be to drink soda if you want a sweet drink, but don’t get angry when Lacroix does not taste like one.