A few years ago, PepsiCo signed a deal with the Dr Pepper Snapple Group to distribute various flavors of Crush, complimenting Sierra Mist in their lineup. Part of this move was due to the commercial failure of the Tropicana Twister Soda line (Orange, Grape, Strawberry, Citrus), leaving a “fruit flavor hole” for Pepsi to compete against the likes of Coke’s Fanta. Because of this, Orange Crush, Strawberry Crush, and other tastes have become more widely available. One benefit of this deal is the widespread appearance of newer flavors, like Crush Cherry.
Bottled with a smart, dark color, Cherry Crush is actually quite good for a fruit beverage sweetened by high fructose corn syrup (HFCS). The flavor is bold and surprisingly cola-like, which was unexpected for a brand that typically reflects sweet fruit flavors. The scent has candy qualities, and after a few gulps, the sweetness finally does creep up on you. This cherry drink is distinctly different from what’s currently available in the genre, and given the increase in distribution and not finding a comparable flavor in Coke’s Fanta offerings, may actually have an impact on regionally available cherry beverages such as Cheerwine. If nothing else, Crush Cherry seems like a “mature” entry in the Crush product line, which I think is a good thing.
This caffeine-free drink contains no actual juice. A 20 oz. bottle will cost you 280 calories, 115 mg of sodium, and 74 g of carbs (73 g of which are sugars). What else is inside? Here’s the ingredient list:
Carbonated water, high fructose corn syrup, natural and artificial flavors, citric acid, sodium benzoate (preservative), caramel color, Red 40, acacia gum, Blue 1
Overall, we give a thumbs up to Cherry Crush. Smart packaging, nice color, and best of all, a pretty tasty & unique cherry beverage from a mainstream beverage brand. It’s a nice addition to the Crush lineup!