Review: Temple Vitality Supertonic
Covers Products: Sparkling Blood Orange Mate, Sparkling Tamarind Tulsi , Sparkling Watermelon Ginseng
Temple Vitality Supertonic is a line of clean energy drinks announced in September 2018 as part of a larger rebranding for Temple. Under new ownership of Dunn’s River Brands, this is part of an effort to help broaden the appeal of the Temple brand.
The line includes four flavors: Ginger Turmeric, Blood Orange Mate, Tamarind Tulsi, and Watermelon Ginseng. For the purposes of this review, we sampled the latter three.
The core approach is the same for the entire lineup. This starts with carbonated water enhanced with 120 mg of natural caffeine, which is then combined with core herbal ingredients tulsi and ashwagandha. The product is sweetened with a modest amount of sugar (16-19 g per can). From there, they’ve customized each flavor using juices, fruit extracts and spices.
For our palates, we found the Tamarind Tulsi variety to be the most enjoyable of the three that we sampled. The sweet tamarind flavor pairs really nicely with the clove and cinnamon that they’ve added to the drink. Otherwise, this flavor is, like the other two, crisp, balanced, and has just the right amount of sweetness. We think that all three will be able to stack up well against other products in the clean energy space.
This product is very much a departure from what we’ve previously seen from Temple under its original owners. Turmeric is noticeably absent as the brand’s hero ingredient and so is the company’s focus on being purists when it comes to what’s in the package. In its place is a more broad copy on adaptogens and “daily wellness” and the format is a decidedly more mainstream looking product that’s essentially an energy drink. This product feels like something that really only shares a name and orange color palette with the Temple products that have come before it.
We certainly understand why they are taking this approach and can’t blame any company for wanting to broaden its appeal. That being said, we think a logical place for Temple to throw its hat in the ring would be to focus on the clean energy space.
Taking a look at the brand that has been created for this, there’s a lot to like. The bright orange can and Temple name are eye-catching and certainly feel like something that will be appealing and memorable.
However, calling the product a “Vitality Supertonic” and calling out “caffeine” on the front of the can is requiring the consumer to connect the dots that this is an energy drink. We’ve seen other companies try to figure out ways to avoiding saying “energy drink,” but it is not, in our opinion, an approach that is likely to be successful. We advocate calling it what it is.
Overall, we suspect that this will be a somewhat polarizing product to Temple’s existing base, but it is a well-executed brand extension that is likely necessary for the short term success of the brand. And it’s one that’s tasty, functional, and should fit in nicely with the other products in the set.