First, I know what you're thinking, and it's probably "I didn't even know Mariah Carey had her own drink!" I found out from a friend who called specifically to tell me because she knew I would find it amusing. Among my friends, I am known for my notorious soft spot for awkward celebrity-endorsed products, and Mariah's off-brand Vitamin Water - named after her mid-90s album 'Butterfly' - is no real exception.
"Who would even buy it?" She laughed, and I could practically hear her cynical eyeroll through the phone.
I would. I would buy it. And this morning, I rolled into Walgreens in my pajamas, and I did.
And now I am going to taste test this stuff for all of you, judging packaging, price, and taste on a 5-point scale. Because Mariah Carey has a five-octave range, and I'm a clever human being.
Cue my obligatory Mariah jam, "Up Out My Face", and let's get this started.
The Packaging: 3/5
Firstly, being comfortable with going to Walgreens only to buy a 'melodic beverage inspired by the magic of Mariah Carey' was the emotional hurdle you would probably expect. The bottle is covered with butterflies and extremely pink. (So basically, if you really want to embarrass your boyfriend the next time you send him to the grocery store for tampons, make sure you tell him to pick you up a bottle of Butterfly too.)
The description on the back of the bottle tells little of the drink's actual flavor, and instead is filled with enough cheesy Mariah metaphors to make you want to quit while you're ahead. And I quote:
"BUTTERFLY gives everyone something new to sing about. Let this melodic blend of sophisticated sweetness lift you to your high notes every day that you pamper yourself with a sip of Butterfly inspired by Mariah Carey."
It is nice that Mariah was able to find new work for whoever helped her write the script for 'Glitter'. I guess.
The Price: 5/5
(99¢ per 16-ounce bottle)
While I would probably best compare this drink to Vitamin Water, it actually sells for much cheaper. When I was at Walgreens, it was labeled as 99 cents, but when I went to actually buy it, there was an additional 20 cents taken off when she scanned it. 79 cents for a 16-ounce beverage? (Don't let Mariah's champagne glass in the above picture fool you, this stuff is selling cheaper than bottled water!)
The Taste: 2/5
I was pretty thirsty on the ride back home, so while I wanted to wait to try this fairly, I stole a sip while waiting at a red light.
THIS DRINK IS SO SWEET. They really weren't kidding when they used the phrase 'sophisticated sweetness'. It tastes like someone melted down a couple bags of strawberry Jolly Ranchers and mixed it into water with that cotton candy body spray I used to wear in junior high. I am already a huge sugar wimp as it is. I usually have to dilute apple juice or lemonade whenever I buy it because it always seems to run too sweet. So the fact that this drink was so much sweeter than normal made my stomach instantly feel a little sick.
To its credit, I think some people would like this if it were either heavily diluted or splashed into a sparkling white wine or vodka-based cocktail. I would imagine it would give alcoholic drinks a taste similar to Nuvo. (Not to mention, it's a pretty similar color.)
Overall Score: D (66%)
This drink is bogus. But I suppose if you're looking for a cheap mixer for your Mariah Carey at the Colosseum pre-gaming party this summer, you're pretty much set.