From the Herd Shop | Monster Ultra Sunrise

So, to be clear, here is how the selection process for this column works.

First, is there a new root beer? If yes, test it out. If no, move to the next step.

Then, how much caffeine is going to be required to get me through the day?

Figure that out, and then pick the brightest color package with the amount of caffeine needed.

Without a new root beer at the Herd Shop, a bunch on my plate today and consecutive nights of poor sleep, caffeine sounds like a good thing.

And all of that led me to the bright orange can of Monster Energy Ultra Sunrise.

To be honest, the can itself is a reason to buy this thing. The orange paint gives way to the silver can in the negative spaces in a fun, flowy imagery. The lack of paint in the negative spaces also feels cool. The Monster logo sits just slightly lower than the orange, completing the design.

All right, enough nerding out over the can design. The real question is, is this thing any good?

Right off the top, there is an outpouring of citrus smell, which means looking with your nose is a much better idea than looking with your eyes. The yellow color looks a lot like something that is a little unhealthy. Maybe this Monster needs to drink a little water?

From a flavor standpoint, the smell and the lack of water don’t quite line up. There is a lot of citrus flavor initially, but it fades quickly.

Which leads to the little story written on the can. There, the claim is that “Ultra Sunrise will get you started, but is great anytime: light, crisp and refreshing with a flavor all its own.”

It is most definitely light. To be honest, I expected a bit more flavor. To be fair, I don’t often Monster, so my expectations were too high. This was confirmed after talking to people who often drink Monster.

Refreshing? Sure, I will give it that. It is definitely best when cold. Thankfully the Fargo weather will oblige to help in that quest.

But crisp? That one doesn’t quite work. Perhaps the best way to describe this is by picturing cutting an apple. Crisp is a short, quick action with a sharp knife. Ultra Sunrise is like cutting an apple with a dull knife; it is kind of crisp, but isn’t great.

At the end of it, this Monster leaves something to be desired. Saying that of a drink that offers 150mg of caffeine per can seems a bit bad, but I think I found the reason.

It says right on the top of the can, and how I missed this I will never know, “zero calories + zero sugar.”

I am of the firm belief that you can never trust a drink without calories and without sugar. Monster Ultra Sunrise hits that point home.

It is like comparing the Ferrari Enzo to the Ferrari LaFerrari. The Enzo is a brilliant supercar with a screaming 6.0 L V12, but the Ferrari TheFerrari uses electric power to supplement another V12, so power delivery is smooth and completes the experience.

Sugar, in this case, is the electric power to caffeine’s petrol power.

So, do I recommend this drink? I will give it a pass, but it will not be at the top of my list. I will stick with my Monster Mutant for now.

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