Thirsty Thursday: Red Bull Sugarfree vs. Red Bull Total Zero

Thirsty Thursday. Because I get so thirsty, I need more than one drink. 

For my very first TT edition I have chosen a face-off between two diet versions of the beloved poppa bear of energy drinks: Red Bull. Bernard was once again working at the gas station when I bought my bevvies* and gave me his two cents when I was checking out. I do not want to color your perception of these two drinks, so I will go into further detail after I’ve contrasted the contenders.

*Side note: I used the term “bevvies” as a shortened form of “beverages”, similar to how “twinsies” is a cuter form of the word “twins”. One quick Google search led me to the realization that “bevvies” actually conotates an alcoholic beverage, which these two drinks definitely are not … I think.

Red Bull Sugarfree

I decided to go with the known first. I am a Red Bull fan and opt for this 10-calorie version when my eating habits have been naughty. The lovely sky blue is an incredibly literal can design for a “light” drink. It’s more cheerful than the slate gray of the Total Zero. The first sip is instantly bubbly, which I notice immediately. Not far behind comes that overly saccharine this-is-definitely-a-diet-drink flavor. Somebody tell me, is that the aspartame? Because it sure tastes like ass … partame, that is.

What’s most difficult for me is tying not to pit this beverage against original Red Bull, because we all know it pales in comparison. But, on its own, it’s a rather sweet drink that gives you a smaller shot of energy for less calories than full-flavor options.

Red Bull Total Zero

Red Bull is a strong blue. Red Bull Sugarfree is a cheerful sky blue. Red Bull Total Zero is a different beast: slate gray. Before I even take a sip I notice that the tab at the top with the bull cutout isn’t colored like the other two, but instead is the same metallic color as the neutral can. I mean, what could possibly convey zero more than zero color from a design standpoint? Well done, I am glad they are enforcing their brand from the get go.

Wow! My first taste is more mild than the Sugarfree flavor. I don’t know if this is because the taurine comes before the citric acid in this beverage or the magnesium carbonate is gone altogether (yes, that’s how closely I inspect nutrition labels). But that fake sweet flavor I’m accustomed to in diet drinks, and even the Red Bull Sugarfree, is somehow less prominent.

Just to double check, I let my palate rest, and go back and forth between the two. Trying A after B, then B after A, then resting and doing it all over again. I even close my eyes to make sure I’m not being biased. And Pepsi was a clear winner in terms of flavor! Oh wait, wrong blindfold test. Sugarfree definitely has a more lingering carbonation after you sip it and get this: Red Bull Total Zero totally has an aftertaste somewhat akin to Squirt!

THE WINNER: Red Bull Total Zero

As I was checking out at the gas station today, Bernard engaged me in a conversation about the new Red Bull Total Zero. According to him it tastes much more like the original than the Sugarfree and is just a better experience in general. Now, I have been sipping these two for a few minutes  and can no longer accurately recall the exact taste of calorie-DGAF Red Bull. So I will neither affirm nor deny his statement; just know that it is my clear favorite of the diet versions.

Before I go I wanted to provide you with a picture of the Red Bull headquarters in Austria. Sadly, the last time I went to Salzburg I did not visit. But working in an office like this is would be ideal. Do you think rewriting my blog in German will help my chances? BECAUSE I’M SO AMPED ON RED BULL, I JUST MIGHT DO IT!

Photo courtesy of fellow blogger, Hawke.

 Nutrition Info: Both are low- to no- calorie drinks, so you know they contain less calories but way more weird, organ-embalming chemicals. 


4 comments on “Thirsty Thursday: Red Bull Sugarfree vs. Red Bull Total Zero

  1. Totally disagree! 🙂
    I love Sugar Free Red Bull.. and was sort of surprised that they came out with a “Total Zero” one, which really, has only significantly less.. what? I don’t know. 10 less calories, I think.
    Either way, Sugar-free is definitely an acquired taste, but I’d take it over Red Bull and Red Bull Zero anyday! 🙂

  2. The “Total Zero” tasted almost flat to me. Not the bubbly drink I’m accustomed to. Zero has 0 calories and 0 carbs. Sugar-free has 10 calories and 4 carbs. I’m not sure which ingredients are different but I’ll def. stick with sugar-free.

  3. I’ll have to try Zero. Sugarfree and I have a longstanding love/hate relationship lol

  4. I love the total zero. it has a darker color and just tastes better.. i didn’t notice any less bubbles. It’s my favorite energy drink on the market.

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