Friday, February 17, 2012

From the Beverage Aisle: Orbitz

Product: Orbitz
Company: Clearly Canadian Beverage Corp.
Years: 1997-?

Orbitz

"This Drink Has Balls" is the slogan that I thought Clearly Canadian should have used in their marketing of this product, but sadly, they never responded to my letters. I thought they'd maybe want to be cutting edge, I mean, they were already using a Z in place of the S in the name, so they are one step removed from a catchy, possibly in poor taste catch phrase (sorry to use the phrase "Poor Taste" around you, Orbitz.....I know it's a touchy subject.)

In 1997, Clearly Canadian Beverage Corp.  was looking to expand on their line of Carbonated Fruit beverages called "Clearly Canadian"(I always liked the Coastal Cranberry). What they came up with, however, was frankly frightening. It was something I have never seen in all my years of, well, drinking liquid. What they came up with was a noncarbonated fruit-flavored beverage, but not just any noncarbonated fruit-flavored beverage, but one that had small edible balls floating in it. They marketed it as a "texturally enhanced alternative beverage".

I don't know about you, but I don't enjoy chewing when I should be drinking.


The small balls floated due to their nearly equal density to the surrounding liquid, and remained suspended because of an ingredient known as gellan gum. It sort of looked like a lava lamp. That you could drink. If for some reason you ever wanted to drink a lava lamp.

Orbitz came in several flavors:
  • Raspberry Citrus
  • Blueberry Melon Strawberry
  • Pineapple Banana Cherry Coconut
  • Vanilla Orange
  • Black Currant Berry
  • Charlie Brown Chocolate

For obvious reasons, Orbitz disappeared from convenient stores across America, almost as quickly as it's floating balls arrived. It was a fad, and I'm sure they made money off it. But like all fads, you blink and it's gone.

Seriously, though, would you drink this?
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9 comments:

  1. I remember growing up with Orbitz. I quite liked them; It was like drinking Bubble Tea, but cold. pretty tasty, for those who didn't mind the little balls that had the consistency of snot.

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  2. I, too, tried it once. Didn't much care for it, but I did find the concept interesting enough to purchase a couple of bottles to keep. They're on a shelf in my closet, and the little balls are still floating.

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  3. In case you haven't heard, Clearly Canadian is re-launching the original formulas in glass bottles via a fan-led campaign. Amazing. http://www.clearlycanadian.com/?rn=101722
    And if all goes well, we might yet see Orbitz back one day too...

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  4. Not only WOULD I drink it, unfortunately I DID. And it was disgusting. I seriously cringe at the thought of that foul-tasting, floaty-laden sludge. Even as a kid I knew the shit was not right.

    Clearly Canadian was amazeballs, but this stuff should've remained a nightmare in some food CEO's head.

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    Replies
    1. Clearly Canadian was AMAZING.....I always loved the Coastal Cranberry. But I mostly enjoyed the fact that I didn't have to chew it when I drank it.....

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    2. Bubble tea does involve solids floating in liquids. And for anything with "snot-like consistency", I will introduce you to kombucha.

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  5. Somewhere in the depths of storage at my mothers.....I have an unopened bottle of this....I think it was the banana coconut whatever flavor..... If I can find it I'll post a pic.

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  6. My mother still has a bottle of Orbitz - I don't know what flavor it is, but the floaty bits are orange. It was in her office for years, like a display piece.

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