Have you ever spotted this unique 10 oz blue glass bottle? Featuring "grip control bumps," this interesting shape holds Bawls Guarana, a "high caffeine soda." Or in laymen's terms, an energy drink.
Per a CNN interview from 1998, company founder Hoby Buppert explained that the unusual name "represents a state of mind. Bawls is a very common slang term — to be bold and daring — and that's how we see the product." A popular drink on college campuses and with military personnel, the company ran into financial problems in 2009 that forced out the original founders. As a result, Bawls pretty much became a nonexistent brand, disappearing from store shelves. A new investment group (Bawls Acquisition LLC) purchased the assets and resumed operations in 2010, resulting in the company and product line we have today. The revived operation has even purchased other brands, including Crunk Energy Drink.
The main hook behind Bawls is the high level of caffeine derived from the Guarana berry. This 10 oz bottle contains 65 mg of caffeine, which breaks down to 6.5 mg/oz. For comparison, regular Mountain Dew contains 4.5 mg/oz., Red Bull 9.64 mg/oz., and Monster Energy 10.0 mg/oz.
When you twist off the bottlecap, you are greeted with a slight citrus scent. The drink itself is clear in color, and presents a light flavor, hinting a lemon/lime flavor note sweetened with high fructose corn syrup. There's light carbonation, with a slight taste of "energy-ish" elements in the aftertaste, notably the Guarana. There's a decent caffeine "buzz" that's hard to miss, but as noted, it doesn't contain as much as leading energy products.
Overall, for an energy product, Bawls Guarana has a great taste. In fact, that taste can be deceiving, as you could find yourself easily digesting multiple bottles based on taste alone, resulting in a substantial caffeine boost. The product packaging is excellent and distinctive, doing a wonderful job of differentiating the product from others in the category. The higher caffeine level is attractive to those looking for the effects of a stimulant, while not sitting as such a high level as to scare away those who may be overwhelmed by the likes of Red Bull or Monster.
Bawls Guarana High Caffeine Soda
Carbonated water, high fructose corn syrup, citric acid, natural guarana extract, sodium benzoate (as a preservative), caffeine, natural and artificial flavors, and caramel coloring.
A 10 oz bottle contains 120 calories, 35 mg sodium, and 32 g carbs (32 g sugars)