Review: Doc 360 & Diet Doc 360


There are a lot of Dr Pepper clones out there. This is another one. What's the difference? Well, Doc 360 cranks up the caffeine content quite a bit. But is it good?

Doc 360

I first encountered Doc 360 at the National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) Show in Chicago last fall. It's produced by WIS-PAK, a large Pepsi bottler out of Wisconsin. They came up with the formula on their own to distribute to markets looking for a Dr Pepper alternative, as they have manufacturing locations not only in "America's Dairyland," but also Minnesota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Illinois, Tennessee, and Mississippi.

BevReview at the NACS Show

I must say, I'm impressed by the packaging approach, in that it's not just another "Dr. [Fill in the Blank]". The drink looks contemporary and energetic from the packaging design. From the sales sheets I was given at the show, it's interesting to read who is being targeted by this drink. An excerpt:

Why 360?

Doc 360 take the consumer out for a full circle of flavor. We know once they try it, their tastebuds will flip.

The term 360 is also closely associated with the extreme sports world. The extreme sports market segment has been exhibiting rapid growth in the popularity over the last decade.

This segment fits perfectly with Doc 360, it allows and encourages individual creativity in the innovation of new maneuvers and in the stylish execution of existing techniques.

Who's It Made For?

Heavy users within the flavor category, Millennials & Gen-Xers, C&G consumers [Convenience and Gas], mostly male 18-34 years, looking for value, variety, & stimulation.

These are the people who pride themselves in participating in challenging, cutting-edge activities and are constantly searching for new ways to test themselves.

You'll note that none of this sales text actually talks about the flavor of the drink itself. Given this positioning, however, I can understand why they are attempting to describe this drink as "The Mountain Dew of Dr Peppers". It's a Pepper clone that's higher in caffeine and positioned at the same Dew market.

As for the taste, it's actually very good. It doesn't taste exactly like Dr Pepper, obviously, but it's a pretty good copy. I'd say it's missing some of the spicy "kick" that we associate with the original, but it's not bland by any means. There's a quality sweet flavor there. I'd definitely drink it again.

Diet Doc 360

I think I was more impressed with Diet Doc 360, because while you could tell that it was a diet drink (sweetened with aspartame and Ace-K), it had a decent aftertaste and flavor. The scent, coloring, and base taste all are in line with what's you'd expect from Dr Pepper. Nice job!

The big differentiator that Doc 360 likes to make is with caffeine content. Regular Dr Pepper contains 3.42 mg/oz of caffeine. Doc 360 and Diet Doc 360, on the other hand, contain 5.0 mg/oz. (For comparison with their target market, original Mountain Dew contains 4.5 mg/oz.) So you basically have a Pepper clone with an energy drink-type emphasis.

Overall, if you can find Doc 360, it's worth a try for something a little different, but familiar. Recommended!

Doc 360
Carbonated water, high fructose corn syrup, caramel color, natural & artificial flavors, phosphoric acid, sodium benzoate (as a preservative), and caffeine

A 12 oz can contains 150 calories, 55 mg sodium, and 40 g carbs (40 g sugars).

Diet Doc 360
Carbonated water, caramel color, natural & artificial flavors, phosphoric acid, aspartame, sodium benzoate (as a preservative), caffeine, and acesulfame potassium

A 12 oz can contains 0 calories, 55 mg sodium, and 0 g carbs (0 g sugars).

Official Website: DrinkDoc360.com

Full Disclosure: This beverage was provided compliments of WIS-PAK
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Comments

  1. Nice looking cans and I'm a big Dr. Pepper fan. I'll have to scout these out to see if I can find them.

  2. Mythmaker says:

    I was frankly surprised by this one. For one, I bought it at a gas station for 50 cents a pop, which was great, but it was actually quite good. I wish I'd stocked up on a few more while I was there, especialyl since I'm pretty sure it's the only place in my state to stock the stuff.

    A bit sweeter than DP, but with a pretty good bite to go with it. Overall, a product I really hope they continue!

  3. I spotted this in the fountain drink selection at a gas station i stopped at whike out of town, and i decided to try it out since i was in the mood for something new. I was pretty surprised by this. I'm a big Dr. Pepper fan and usually abhor the imatations. But i think DOC 360 just became the exception. While its not going to replace DP, it has its own unique flavor that i enjoyed. I'll probally pick up a 12 pack if ever see it on the shelves.

  4. Wimbleton says:

    Ya this soda is marketed to those "extreme" sports fans and the graphics are CRAZY!! If this was 1995 and it's just a DP ripoff. "These are the people who pride themselves in participating in challenging, cutting-edge activities and are constantly searching for new ways to test themselves." lol what? or… people looking for a DP nock-off thats cheaper. "I must say, I'm impressed by the packaging approach, in that it's not just another "Dr. [Fill in the Blank]"." Yes because Doc is not short for Dr. You are easily impressed.

  5. I selected a Dr. Pepper from a soda machine and got this stuff instead. It's not terrible, but it's not Dr. Pepper, either, and I wasn't really looking for *more* caffeine. :-P Kind of annoyed by it. Stupid Pepsi distributors….

  6. I tried this for the first time just now at a Burracho's Mexican Grill outside of Madison, WI. I really like. I like it because it doesn't try to taste exactly like Dr. Pepper. It just tastes like it's own flavor. I will definitely drink this again. Don't write it off until you've actually tried it.

  7. This soda is amazing in my opinion. It doesn't taste exactly like Dr. Pepper, and rightfully so. This soda gives a kickstart to my day because of the extra caffeine (obviously) and the bubbly nature of it. I first found this soda at KwikStop in Westby, WI in an aluminum bottle. My eyes went right to it among other drinks thanks to the brilliant packaging. This is my new favorite soda as far as I'm concerned. Just a reply to Kevin: I hope every Burrachos gets Doc 360. I frequently go to my local Burrachos in La Crosse, WI and I think Doc 360 would be an excellent addition to the fountain drink selection.

  8. I found this product last night at our local (Waukesha) Walmart for 2.59 a 12 pack. I figured it was a steal and I like Dr. Pepper. The taste is great! I LOVE carbonation and this product is super bubbly. The taste in my opinion is similar to DP but with it's own uniqueness. As far as the caffeine, I have a 4 year old and a 3 month old that I'm trying to keep up with so I figured this could help me out. It gave me quite the "streak" of energy however, about an hour later I found myself slightly jittery in the hands. Even so I do enjoy the taste and the energy and the price really can't be beat. I'd suggest if you enjoy this soda to pick up a few 12 packs to keep around because this is the first time I've ever seen it and I'd hate for it to be the last!

  9. I have always hated Dr. Pepper, something about it I just didn't care for. But Doc came out here in northern Ne, and they were cheep, buy one get one free, my kids are not allowed to drink allot of pop and my oldest son chooses not to drink pop at all. I went ahead and bought two bottles. I tried one and was surprised, while it tasted like Dr. Pepper, it has more of a cola taste and not so much Dr pepper tastes. :) I can actually drink it if I'm cravy a soda and don't have coke. With that in mind and after reading the caffeine content, i have to say I won't be allowing my son to drink this soda anymore. Sorry Pepsi, but caffeine is bad For ya!

  10. Not really Impressed with it. I Love Dr Pepper, Mr Pibbs is a close second. There was something missing as far as flavor.

  11. I buy my groceries & Miller Lite at Woodman's and for every case of beer came with a 12 pk. of Doc 360, I never heard of it so I got 1. I really like it, & my husband as well. We both said it don't leave a after taste, not sugary, or to much carbon. I could tell it was on the order of a Dr. Pepper, & my husband don't like D. P. But we like Doc 360. It did'nt give me jitter's or extra energy like I've read in a few review's. It just taste good. I can only drink 2 can's of Pepsi a day only because it irritates my stomach, so I drink 7 Up. my husband drink's Pepsi. But now I'll buy Doc 360

  12. Valerie Grove says:

    I bought a 2 liter bottle of it the other day. Sorry, I didn't think much of it! I couldn't taste the extra caffeine in it! I think people should quit trying to imitate Dr. Pepper! there's only one Dr. Pepper!

  13. Darci Gundvaldson says:

    I love this pop! My husband found Diet Doc 360 at our local Hy Vee in Brookings, SD for $0.99 cents for a whole 12 pack of cans! He figured it was worth the try for that price! It is hands down the best diet pop I have had! It goes down smooth and does not have the after taste typically associated with diet drinks. We have not seen this in the store since we made our initial purchase, but I hope we find it for sale again in our area.

  14. Our family has just tried Diet DOC360 and we all really like the flavor. To me, DOC360 has a good balance between a cola flavor and a Dr. Pepper flavor with the slight increase of caffeine, while toning down the "bite" that Dr. Pepper has. I will be looking for this soda again. You have a new customer

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