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Eau de O[2]
April 23, 2001
The hottest new products to hit the crowded sports-drink market are oxygen-enriched waters. These airy liquids claim to pack as much as 10 times the oxygen of regular H[2]O and to boost energy levels, among other benefits. Hot air? Maybe. The more basic question: How do they taste? We asked Harriet Lembeck, director of the Wine and Spirits Program at The New School for Social Research in New York City, to conduct a blind tasting of four oxygen-enriched waters—and one mystery beverage.
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April 23, 2001

Eau De O[2]

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The hottest new products to hit the crowded sports-drink market are oxygen-enriched waters. These airy liquids claim to pack as much as 10 times the oxygen of regular H[2]O and to boost energy levels, among other benefits. Hot air? Maybe. The more basic question: How do they taste? We asked Harriet Lembeck, director of the Wine and Spirits Program at The New School for Social Research in New York City, to conduct a blind tasting of four oxygen-enriched waters—and one mystery beverage.

Water: SerVen Rich ($1.19 per 1-liter bottle)

O[2] claim: Eight times more oxygen than regular water:

Promo line: "Water without that bitter aftertaste."

Lembeck's take: "The bouquet brought to mind a sea breeze, a fresh-air smell, which was encouraging. But the taste was very flat and slightly soapy. It reminded me of medicine stirred into water, like Epsom salts or baking soda."

Water: Aqua Rush ($1.50 per 1-liter bottle)

O[2] claim: Nine to 10 times more oxygen than regular water

Promo line: "Applying oxy-ion water immediately to a wound stops the bleeding within seconds and accelerates healing."

Lembeck's take: "Very bitter, very mineral. Boring bouquet. Wouldn't you prefer to drink water with some taste in it?"

Water: Clearly Canadian O+2 ($1.19 per half-liter bottle).

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