Review: Drank Deuce

A while back we reviewed Drank, an “anti-energy drink” from the folks at Innovative Beverage Group. The unique concept of the beverage aimed to provide something that helped you relax and, to use the company’s words, “slow your roll.” Well, proving that everything probably needs a sequel, it’s time to take a look at the anti-energy shot, Drank Deuce.

Drank Deuce

The current hype in beverages these days are energy shots, made popular by market leader 5-Hour Energy, with familiar brands like Red Bull and Monster finally getting into the ring. Noted for coming in small packaging, being non-carbonated, not requiring refrigeration, having high concentrations of caffeine, vitamins, and functional “stuff”, and featuring a relatively high price point, this new sub-category of energy drinks have become the new darlings of the beverage world.

Drank Deuce is the relaxing take on an energy shot, produced by a partnership between Drank owner Innovative Beverage Group and Layfield Energy. Those involved note that it’s “under the specified liquid limit for airport security, which makes it the perfect travel companion when crossing multiple time zones.” Another selling point being pushed is a lower calorie count. While a 16 oz. can of Drank packs 220 calories, a 2 oz. shot of Drank Deuce only has 16.

The packaging is the standard look of an energy shot… tiny plastic container with a narrow screwtop. Think a taller bottle of Liquid Paper and you get the right idea. In this case, Drank Deuce comes in black packaging with a wrapped label, showcasing the brand’s “D” logo all “pimped” out with a crown and sparkly attributes. The bottom of the shot notes that this is a dietary supplement.

Upon opening the bottle, you are welcomed with Drank’s notable grape-ish scent, which also influences the light pink/purple color of the beverage, keeping it in line with the original. As for the flavor itself, it’s very different from the original Drank. While I thought the canned beverage was very syrupy, this is cleaner in nature. The grape taste is weak, feeling more watered-down in general, as if you made Grape Kool-Aid and didn’t get the mixture quite right. There’s no carbonation, and surprisingly, I didn’t really miss it… nor did I mind that the drink wasn’t refrigerated. While I think it would taste better with a stronger flavor base, I actually liked the taste of Drank Deuce more than original Drank. Granted, it’s hard to really analyze when you are dealing with just 2 oz. of liquid!

Is there a big difference in the ingredients between the flagship drink and the shot? When comparing the ingredients, Deuce contains the same as standard Drank, complete with the flagship “relaxation” elements of melatonin, valerian root, and rose hips:

Drank Deuce
Water, high fructose corn syrup, sucrose, citric acid, natural flavor, sodium citrate, potassium benzoate, potassium sorbate, niaciamide (Vitamin B3), D-calcium pantothenate (Vitamin B5), valerian root extract, rose hips extract, pyridoxine hydrochloride (Vitamin B6), Red 40, melatonin, Blue 1, cyanocobalamin (Vitamin B12)

Also just like the canned version, the following callout appears on the packaging:

Warning: This product may cause drowiness. Not recommended more than 2 servings within a 24 hour period.

A 2 oz. shot (which is a single serving) contains 10 mg of sodium, 4 g of carbs (which are sugars), 40 mg of Vitamin B3, 4 mg Vitamin B6, 12 mcg Vitamin B12, 20 mg Vitamin B5, and 42 mg of the aforementioned “relaxation” stuff, which Drank calls it’s “Proprietary Calming Blend.”

When we first reviewed Drank, I noted that while I loved the concept, I really didn’t see many calming effects with the drink itself. I’m a light sleeper and quite sensitive to caffeine (“So why are you reviewing beverages, Steve?”) and really wanted to see a personal correlation with the claims. With Drank Deuce, I think the calming effects are more notable, without all that extra stuff like 54 g of sugars and carbonation (Deuce just has 4 g of sugar). I’m not saying all the sudden I got drowsy and slumped over the keyboard, but there was a certain amount of “mellowness” present after about an hour or so. Take it for what it’s worth!

Drank Deuce is the relaxation-oriented energy shot version of big brother Drank, making it a curious entry in this growing beverage classification. While the flavor could be stronger, the shot incarnation of the formula agrees with us better in regards to its functional benefits and taste.

Full Disclosure: Beverage provided compliments of Innovative Beverage Group