Inspired By Caffeine

An Energy Drink Review Website, for drinks sold in the UK


Red Bull Energy Shot

Posted on January 30, 2011 at 6:00 PM

Active Ingredients:

Caffeine (80mg), Niacin (18mg), Pantothenic acid (6mg), VItamin B6 (1.4mg), Vitamin B12 (2.5ug), Taurine (1g).


My Review:

It's been a busy two months for me. From November to 20th December, work kept me busy. From Christmas onwards, play kept me busy. Now that I've returned to the rat-race i'm settling back into the role of "social drone" and set about getting back into the swing of things. I've picked up the nunchaku, I've started reading Ben Counter, I bought myself a trumpet, I'm considering archery, and I purchased a bottle of Red Bull energy shot. Of all those things, the shot turns out to be the most premium, and that's not a good thing.

Though nowadays it only takes one or two Monster Rippers a week to satiate me, I would firmly argue I haven't lost any of my critique. Permit me to prove this, by explaining all the ways Red Bull energy shot will be worse than their already sub-par beverage, before I even try it. I find bullet points are always the most accessable:



  • It's smaller
  • It's more expensive
  • It's non-carbonated
  • It uses sweeteners (admittedly Sucralose)
  • It's based on a drink that's rubbish anyway



Not to exclude any other company from ridicule, these points apply almost universally to drinks that are reduced to a shot size.

In terms of encapsulating their 250ml beverage, the packaging for this shot is perfect. It still has all the classic monikers, such as the two bulls charging, the two-tonw blue and silver, the jaunty angled colour split, and the general sensation that I am going to be overcharged. I can't really say the design for this is any better or worse than the can, because they are both essentially the same. Although I will say they've gone to great lengths to make it look like a can (i.e. metal), despite being made of plastic.

Twist open this bad boy and... ah. If you consume energy drinks, there isn't a more familiar smell than this one. Classic "mixed fruit", of which Einstein himself probably couldn't categorise. It does smell suspiciously crude, like Emerge (which didn't recieve a sterling review). On consumption, I will concede one thing. It does taste like the real drink. But on the other hand, that's literally it's peak. Congratulations Red Bull, because if I bought a can of your drink, let it warm to room temperature and go flat, it would be just as "tasty" as your shot. I'm not going to deny that I've had worse shots (Target, for example), but just like their drink, it's disappointingly average. There aren't any critical flaws in the taste, but by God is it boring.

On that note, it also packs the same punch as it's volumptuous cousin. That is to say, it's utterly average. Though it contains the same blend as the standard 250ml can in a concentrated format, I can't say that increased ratio did me any extra favours. I'm not going to deny that I received a boost, but certainly there are a myriad of other products that have done (and will carry on doing) the job much better.

The final nail in the coffin for Red Bull Energy Shot is the price. £2.11 is the most expensive product, sold in the U.K., that I have reviewed (Bawls was more expensive, but that was imported from the U.S.). For that money, I really expect no less than perfection. As such, when you find out it's a warm, flat cover version of Red Bull's standard drink, it's more of a joke than Nick Clegg's tuition fee promises. It is a great metaphor for Red Bull themselves. While they sell their lukewarm, overpirced energy drink (that's only still going because of it's original 1987 popularity boost), they have the gall to come up with a "brand new product" (because no-one has ever made an energy shot before) and slap an even bigger price tag on it. All whilst having the shortcomings that I have aforementioned.

It really doesn't matter what I say. Red Bull is, and probably will be for a long time, the world's best selling energy drink. They make me think of Apple, and what would happen if they ever made an energy drink. It doesn't matter if the iPad is just a giant touchscreen. It doesn't matter that it only has a 16GB hard drive for £400 (my netbook has a 160GB hard drive for half the price). It doesn't matter that the only thing going for it are a bunch of "apps" that you can find for free on (and some you could probably program yourself). Their PR is good, people build up a hype, sales go mad, and suddenly critics such as myself have to come up with excuses why we just "didn't see the potential". Well I for one refuse to back down on these issues, whether it be Red Bull, Apple, or any other company based on image. These companies have gone beyond the clothing brands, and are selling you high tech pieces of equipment with the same ideals used in fashion and design. "I'm making a statement", or "I'm an individual". Well you aren't. You're selling out to a gigantic faceless company, that has used basic human psychology to fool you into thinking that they are doing you a favour. Stop buying jeans that are £300 because they say "Calvin Klein" on the hems. Stop buying underpowered computers because they have "iPad" written on it, and a picture of a bitten apple. Stop paying stupid amounts of money for a beverage that has had it's formula stolen and replicated so many times, I could probably dedicate a seperate website just to those knock-offs of said hypothetical drink.


If that isn't clear enough, let me say it again.

Stop wasting money on branded products, and stop drinking Red Bull.

You aren't hip. You aren't cool. The only ones who will find you interesting when you are middle-aged and lonely are the Repo men who are happy they can repossess all the crap you bought, because you had no money left to pay the mortgage.

Packaging Rating:     6 / 10

Taste Rating:              5 / 10

Energy rating:             4 / 10

Value Rating:              1 / 10


Categories: Energy Shots, Over �2, Red Bull