Review: Après Cold Brew and Vanilla Protein Drinks

Posted: Feb 26, 2019 at 1:47 PM (Last Updated: Feb 26, 2019 at 4:53 PM)

Covers Products: Cold Brew Coffee, Vanilla

Après, a line of plant-based protein drinks, introduced two new flavors in late 2018: Cold Brew Coffee and Vanilla.

Like the rest of the lineup, these two flavors are vegan, non-GMO, gluten free and contain 14 g of protein per container. And thanks to the use of monk fruit as the sweetener, these products have only 6 g of sugar per carton.

From a taste perspective, these products seem like a step forward from the original Après flavors. They are also very mainstream flavors found in most brands of protein drinks, which means that consumers shouldn’t have to compromise when trying out this product.

Beyond that, we think they’ve done quite a nice job with both of these flavors. The Vanilla is smooth and slightly rich while the Cold Brew Coffee variety has a bold coffee note that’s front and center. Perhaps more importantly, these products have a clean finish and minimal sweetener aftertaste.

Finally, there’s the packaging, which is, like the rest of the Après line, an 11 oz Tetra Pak with a Dreamcap closure. As we mentioned in our initial review of Après, the design is much less technical than other products in the category.

While we support taking a unique approach, we do think that the front panel fails to communicate what the product is. Furthermore, the images that go with each flavor are abstract and not at all descriptive of the particular flavor. From our perspective, Après needs to figure out how to improve upon both of these while maintaining its unique look. Otherwise, we think the brand risks being lost in the pack.

Overall, these latest two flavors are definitely a step forward for Après from a formulation perspective. However, our concerns about the packaging and the lack of useful visual keys to differentiate the flavors are only magnified with the addition of two new flavors. If they can address these concerns, we think there’s some solid potential for the brand.

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