Yee-haw! It’s time to mosey on back to everyone’s favorite Lone Star Bubbler, Rambler.
Rambler has been on our minds a lot during these hot summer days, because nothing sounds more refreshing than popping open those eye-catching cans, replete with nature scenes and the alluring phrase that gets us every time: “Limestone Filtered”. It really feels like Rambler was tailor made for a scorcher deep in the fiery heart of central Texas.
Now maybe it’s just us, but when we think of Rambler’s birthplace, the self-proclaimed Weirdest of Them All (🪞), Austin, we can’t help but think of the bonkers housing market currently sweeping the capital city of Texas like a plague of speculative locusts.
Sure, every nook and cranny of our fine country is getting a piece of that insanity. But Austin, with its “Silicon Hills” and laid-back, two-steppin’ reputation, is currently the center of so much relocation, we fear it’s going to be pretty hard to Keep Austin Weird, and the new tagline should be “Well, we had a good run”, which, incidentally, is also the tagline of humanity at this point.
With a continual flurry of breathless headlines like “Austin has an affordability housing problem” and “Austin housing market sets new record as median home price hits $575,000”, we mentally send champagne for our real friends down there getting crushed by the overdevelopment and real pain to Elon Musk.
But let’s set aside the relentless consolidation of land ownership for a moment, and allow Rambler to be the refreshing cooler to our parched, angsty tongues, and for a brief moment, bask in the sweet simple moments of finely crafted sparkling water and memories of live honky tonk at the Broken Spoke. We deserve it.
The icy cold nose when we pop it open is bright and pink. A fleshy, tart grapefruit that’s already quenching something deep and thirsty in our souls.
We like this. This is darn refreshing, and in many ways, it’s exactly what we want a limestone filtered grapefruit flavored sparkling water to be.
There’s something distinctly bright and pithy that correlates to a vivifying and satiating experience. But this Rambler Grapefruit is just as much of a brain teaser as it is a tongue teaser.
Let’s take a closer look at this grapefruit: it doesn’t have the bland, citroid vaguery that the inexplicably iconic Pamplemousse does, nor does this exhibit the full spectrum flesh-to-rind glory that the Waterloo manages to capture. It remains firmly in the more sour Pink Grapefruit Realms, but the minerals are still prominently there, kind of fighting for center stage.
If you are unfamiliar with Rambler, Rambler adds minerals for taste (oh, yes!) as part of their limestone filtration process, which makes their unflavored water way more flavored than you might expect. And we love it.
So while there’s a grapefruit glow to this, you’re getting The Rambler experience first, and the two facets don’t completely harmonize. The grapefruit is a nice little bonus, but ultimately the minerals and grapefruit don’t quite mesh or become more of the sum of their parts.
What we’re saying is: this is a Rambler first, a grapefruit-flavored sparkling water second.
The flavored Ramblers certainly pique our interest and we are intrigued if and when they come out with more of them, but there is something of a hard-to-put-your-finger-on bitterness that leaves an unnatural, if very faint, aftertaste in our mouth.
We wonder if that effect comes from the pithy sour combined with the minerals. Either way, it’s a compelling subject that we are here to ponder.
We’re such fans of Rambler’s original sparkling water, that it’s hard to imagine us preferring their flavors over the pure, mainlined mineral experience that we get from that.
So while the bad news is you may not ever be able to afford a home in your lifetime, the good news is you’ll probably be able to afford a Rambler.
Sparkling Water, Minerals for taste (Calcium Chloride, Magnesium Sulfate, Calcium Carbonate, Potassium Carbonate), Natural Flavors
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