Thursday, January 5, 2006

Bawls “Mints”

I saw these mentioned on the Junk Food Blog a while back and then noticed them at the 7-11 and thought, what the hey, I’ll give them a try! I’m generally not into eating things with extra caffeine, especially not sweets as I have sleep problems, but I figured I could sample them before noon.

imageI don’t know how I could be more annoyed with these.

I love the tins, I think the color and design is great. The text on the tin is a little odd “Finally some mints with BAWLS. Spiked with the same high-caffeine guarana that fuels our BAWLS soft drink, these fizzy sweet mints are the first candies that help you stay up all night. Feel the power of BAWLS mints. Because regular candy is for babies.” First, this is far from the first caffeinated candy. Penguin Mints jump to mind. And if that’s too recent, how about any number of coffee candies. Including those Italian ones with real espresso in them that truckers use called Pocket Coffee. Oh, and the old standby, chocolate covered espresso beans.

Okay, so let’s just step away from the assertion that they’re the first “stay-awake candies”. How about the fact that they keep calling them mints. Now, I understand how sometimes names get co-opted. Like white chocolate isn’t really chocolate, but because it shares some of chocolate’s qualities and ingredients, we call it that. I don’t think that just because your candy is pellet shaped that it can be called a mint. These are not mint flavored. They’re some sort of punch flavored. And that’s fine, but when I’m expecting mint and I get razzleberry, I’m annoyed. 

So, let’s take this candy as if no one showed me the package or told me what it is:

It’s a strangely speckled aqua-blue tablet, about the size of a baby aspirin and the color of a toilet bowl freshener. They don’t smell like much, but once on the tongue there’s a very pleasant tingly sensation, especially if you keep it on the tip of the tongue where the sour zap enhances it. Crunching it or splitting it makes it foam a little more. The flavor is rather bland, something sour and perhaps berry. There’s no indication of what flavor it is (I’ve never had BAWLS soda) but a little search on the web calls it a cross between lemon/lime and cream soda. It’s kind of fun, but gives me the burps. (One of the reasons I avoid sodas.)

I don’t know how caffeinated these little buggers are, but to be safe I only ate about five a day during the time that I was evaluating these. As a candy they’re rather disappointing. I want more flavor out of them, like Pop Rocks. But then again, I’d rather have the fizzy and no caffeine. Way too expensive for candy, but as a caffeine supplement to keep on hand when I have a coffee withdrawal headache, they probably rival that pack of Black Black that I keep at the office. But maybe if they were gonna call them mints they might have wanted to make them, well, mint flavored.

Further reading: Wikipedia on Guarana, on Guarana,  for sale at ThinkGeek, review of BAWLS mints by Eugene at (he gives it a 4/5) and death by caffeine - how many BAWLS mints will it take to kill you?

For those of you wondering, Wikipedia pegs the caffeine content at 5 mg per tablet.

Name: Bawls Mints
  • 10 SUPERB
  • 9 YUMMY
  • 8 TASTY
  • 7 WORTH IT
  • 4 BENIGN
Brand: Bawls
Place Purchased: 7-11 (Hollywood)
Price: $1.99
Size: .68 ounces
Calories per ounce: 140
Categories: Mints, United States

POSTED BY Cybele AT 10:19 am Tracker Pixel for Entry    

  1. Good review! The flavor actually sounds like something I might like. I’m not big into the whole caffeine candy though. I don’t evn drink coffee. I do drink sodas but try to buy caffeine-free when possible.


    Comment by Brian on 1/05/06 at 5:05 pm #
  2. You need to have better research next time. This is a poor rating you gave it. You really have no clue. These mints kicks ass.

    Comment by Juan on 1/18/06 at 6:46 am #
  3. My kids showed me this item and forced me to try them out.  I found the taste of the product quite intriguing and after a few mints, mildly addictive..  I think the market for this stuff is geared to a younger teenage audience.

    Comment by Jimmy Takeki on 2/01/06 at 2:48 pm #
  4. Bawls does taste something like a cream soda / berry type carbonated beverage. Minty, no. Why DID they call them mints?

    Comment by Anne-Marie on 11/20/06 at 8:27 am #
  5. I…don’t think I’ll ever try these.  In a million years.  I don’t have sleeping problems so much as severe insomnia, and besides the text would DEFINITELY throw me off.

    Comment by Sophia on 4/26/07 at 12:13 pm #
  6. Juan is correct, you need to do better research. The main flavor of Bawls (The soda) is a highly caffeinated fruit called Guarana which contain 3 times the amount of caffeine found in coffee beans.

    The flavor of Guarana fruit is about 10 times better than coffee though. I’ve actually eaten the berries and they taste great.

    One thing I will agree with you on is the fact that they call these mints when they clearly aren’t.

    Thanks for the review though smile

    Comment by Evan on 12/29/07 at 10:49 pm #
  7. Wait a second.  So you’re reviewing bawls mints, comparing them to other candies, to other mints.  You can’t compare these to real mints, obviously.  Bawls Mints =/=, Altoids/Tic Tacs.

    And you’ve never tried the Bawls soda.  Don’t you think thats a little important? It’s as simple as going to your local Quick-E-Mart and buying a bottle.  The fact that you didn’t bother indicates journalistic failure, and reveals your bias against Bawls.  This candy does not deserve a score as low as 2/10.

    Comment by TC on 5/07/08 at 3:50 pm #
  8. I’ve never had the candy before but i saw it on a Unwrapped on the Food Network channel once. My husband and I wanted to try it because we like the soda/energy drink that they have, but I haven’t been able to find it at any of our local 7/11’s. Even though I’ve never had the candy before I definitely think it should get better than a 2 and you should try the drink in order to give it a proper rating.

    Oh and if energy drinks effect you highly I wouldn’t suggest finishing a whole bottle of Bawls soda you might get a bit of a headache.

    Comment by Jennie on 1/08/09 at 6:07 pm #
  9. You lost me at blue. Blue food will not pass my lips ever. So yes I have never tried it, but if anyone ever asked me to my first response would probably be ” Are you kidding me it’s blue, you must be trying to kill me.” But I agree with the writer of this article, if you call something a mint it should be minty. Mint is a flavor not a candy type.

    Comment by Davey on 11/05/12 at 5:10 pm #
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