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By Melissa Hutsell
Sparkling waters are having an extended moment, according to America’s Test Kitchen’s Cooking Illustrated. In fact, trendy drinks like La Croix and White Claw are proving so popular, sales of bubbly drinks have tripled in the last 10 years alone. So it’s no surprise that the Portland-based company, Eclipse, developed a line of sustainably sourced, CBD-infused sparkling waters for canna-consumers.
The company’s founders, Ryan Stroud and Ryan Maxson, bring a combined 30 years of experience in the now-overlapping cannabis and beverage industries to Eclipse.
Ryan Stroud, who co-founded the company alongside Ryan Maxson, told the Emerald, “Sparkling water and CBD are a perfect marriage, combining the benefits of hydration and cannabinoids in one all-natural, refreshing beverage.”
Stroud continued, “As demand for sparkling water continues to grow, Eclipse has focused on giving people an even more rich experience, one that reminds us of our connection with the life-affirming plants of the earth.”
The legalization of hemp allowed for that opportunity, said Stroud in a press release from the company. “In January of 2019, the sparkling water market spiked 13% industry-wide, totaling $2.2 billion annually,” he added. “Combine that growth and potential with a burgeoning CBD industry which is expected to reach $2.2 billion by 2023—and you have a market ripe for Eclipse.”
This writer, admittedly, has yet to hop on board the carbonated water bandwagon. But as an admirer of CBD-infused drinks, and a great “unboxing experience,” I was both excited and hesitant to try Eclipse’s take on them.
After chilling the 16-ounce cans overnight, I decided to pop one open in the early afternoon after waking up with a sore throat and an upset tummy. As an allergy sufferer, I’m a fan of products that can help ease my discomforts in one, palatable package that’s as close to natural as possible.
Eclipse Sparkling Waters are made from water sourced from an aquifer in the Cascade Mountains. They contain zero THC, sugar, and have no calories. According to the company, the five-ingredient beverages contain only carbonated water, natural flavor, sodium benzoate for preservative, citric acid, and CBD.
The line comes in three flavors: Cucumber Mint, Mixed Berry and Lemon Lime—all infused with 20mg of CBD. As a citrus lover, I naturally started with the latter, and cracked open the generously sized can of lemon lime.
The hissing of the carbonated water readied me for a fresh, chilly glass. As soon as I start sipping, I notice the sparkling water is more reminiscent of a slightly flavored tonic than a soda, but somehow softer and smoother than either.
Soon, my throat starts to feel better. And about half way through my first glass, I already start to feel the CBD kick-in, which—like most CBD products—gives me an energetic feeling equivalent to caffeine. Bonus: my tummy is settled.
Eager to finish it before it goes flat, I top off my glass with the remainder of the can—armed with the final kick I need to get through the afternoon slump.
Overall, the drink was surprisingly pleasant, though the citrus was a little too subtle for my taste (perhaps an additional splash of lemon or lime would have sealed the deal).
I popped open the remaining cans a little later in the week, and was even more impressed with the other two flavors: Mixed Berry and Cucumber Mint.
Eclipse’s Cucumber Mint was, expectedly, soothing. The taste and aroma were subtle, and crisp, appropriate considering the flavor profile.
Mixed berry is a flavor that’s hit or miss for me as some variations of it can be too sweet or sugary for my palate. But Eclipse nailed the flavor profile here, finding a succulent balance between the saccharine berries, and the tartness of a tonic. In all, it turned out to be my favorite of their offerings.
Though I’m not the carbonated water-junky, I’ll definitely keep an infused Eclipse nearby this winter when I need a medicinal pick-me-up to help combat a cold, upset stomach, or the afternoon slumps.
At $2.99 per 16 ounce can, the price is entirely reasonable, especially compared to the less healthy or palatable options on the market today—like sugar-filled juices, energy drinks or sodas. Plus, it’s a generously sized can with just enough CBD to get through the day without a crash.