Unless you've been living under a rock, you'll have seen or heard about PRIME.
No, not Amazon's venture, but the passion project of YouTube sensations KSI and Logan Paul. The energy boosting drink has been designed to offer "bold, thirst-quenching flavours to help you refresh, replenish, and refuel".
The brightly coloured bottles emblazoned with bold, black text have whipped teenagers and young adults into a frenzy. It’s been selling out across the country, with some savvy-minded folk even stocking up and reselling it for eye-watering price tags.
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At Asda on Smithdown Road, it's only available behind the kiosk counter and, when I visited, quantities were limited to four per customer. It’s so coveted and famous that when I arrived at the ECHO newsroom with three bottles for my colleagues, reporter James McNeill held it in his hands and said it felt like he was meeting a celebrity.
A bottle on my kitchen counter caught the attention of the delivery men dropping off a new chest of drawers at my home. They asked me where I'd managed to track it down and where they might be able to find it - a slightly awkward silence ensued after I answered them, leaving me feeling like they were hoping I'd just give them the bottle.
With all this hype, my colleagues Amy Browne, Charlotte Roszko and I decided to try it for ourselves and see if it lived up to the manic energy and hysteria. Being somewhat older than most of PRIME's fans, we wanted to see whether we could understand its appeal. Here's what we thought:
Jess Flaherty on PRIME Blue Raspberry flavour
At 31, I don't think I'm necessarily PRIME's target customer. The brightly coloured blue bottle doesn't look like anything particularly special, in my opinion. Were it not for the hysterics and attention it's garnered, I'm not sure I'd have noticed it standing proudly behind the counter at Asda's kiosk.
After seeing the reaction to it from my colleagues and the delivery men, my interest was definitely piqued. After unscrewing the lid, I was slightly surprised to hear no fizz - am I the only person who expected this to be a fizzy beverage?
The scent is incredibly sweet and summoned nostalgic memories of melting ice pops dribbling down my hand during summers in the 90s. I'm not sure whether that's a compliment or an insult, in all honesty.
The flavour is very sweet and it's a refreshing enough drink but it doesn't taste any better or significantly more special than any other energy or 'hydration' drink on the market. I was glad to try it but to me, it's 100% not worth the hype.
I genuinely don't understand the obsession - it's a decent enough drink and sure to satisfy those with a sweet tooth but after trying it, my initial reaction to the taste was that it's just "nice" - a word my English teacher forbade us to use due to it being, in her opinion, a bit bland and boring. Perhaps that says it all.
Where to buy: Asda and most other supermarkets, as well as the PRIME website
Cost: Varies, it was £2 per bottle at Asda. On the PRIME website, it's $29.99 for a 12 pack
Amy Browne on PRIME Lemon Lime flavour
I first heard about this PRIME drink a few months ago when I saw videos being shared on Instagram by Barney's Bargains of kids running round the store desperately grabbing bottles off the shelves. I didn't 'get it' but at the grand old age of 'almost 40', I just figured I'm at that stage in life where teens say and do things that go over my head.
I grew up in the era of Sunny D, so I know all too well about how people can get over excited about drinks. In recent weeks, the hype over this particular 'hydration' drink has gone bonkers, to the point where I have been intrigued to see how it actually tastes - but not enough to queue up for it, or spend a fortune on eBay. Does anyone really do that?
So when Jess Flaherty arrived into the ECHO office with her haul of PRIMEs I was happy to get involved in the taste test. The colour of the Lemon Lime bottle is certainly eye catching, in fact it's a pretty audacious shade of green, but I guess that makes it stand out on the shelf.
I honestly didn't know what to expect from the flavour and after one sip I wish I was still in the dark. It's so strikingly sweet, it's a bit like drinking undiluted cordial.
The drink has no artificial colours or flavourings, which is a good thing, but the sweeteners that have gone into this make it taste unnatural and I could only manage a couple of sips before giving up. I guess the sweetness is another reason the kids are so obsessed with this, but it's definitely not one I'll be buying.
Charlotte Roszko on PRIME Blue Raspberry flavour
I'm not usually a huge fan of energy drinks. However, I was intrigued by the hype around PRIME and was keen to see what all of the fuss was about. Having seen images of people queuing up to track the drink down, I had high hopes.
I opted to try the blue raspberry flavour, which comes in a bright blue bottle with PRIME boldly written on the front in black letters. When I opened the drink, I was surprised to discover that it wasn’t fizzy - for some reason, I always thought PRIME would be a fizzy drink. I also imagined the drink to be a brighter blue colour, rather than a pale, cloudy shade.
I was instantly struck by the smell of the drink, which is incredibly sweet and smells very appealing. I took a sip and personally really liked what I tasted. It's very sweet but if, like me, you have a raging sweet tooth, you will probably like it. I'll be honest, I probably wouldn't go out of my way to get it again, but I do think it’s a nice drink and I'm glad I tried it.
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