Drinks Fast Food Humor

Introducing The Backup Food Choice Hall Of Fame

We all know the frustrating feeling of a restaurant carrying Pepsi products instead of Coca-Cola. You kind of say, “Fine,” and try to enjoy the rest of your meal. Yes, there are plenty of people who enjoy Pepsi, it’s obviously one of the biggest soda brands in the world, but in our heart-of-hearts, we all know it is #2 in the soda world.

There’s nothing wrong with being No. 2, obviously. You can make the argument that #2’s are often better than the most popular foods or restaurants out there.

Because of that, we’re going to show love to these backup options, as they’ve served us when, for whatever reason, what we really wanted wasn’t available. They need not be ashamed of being the second option, though. They’re like the NBA player’s go-to mistress when their wife isn’t in that particular city. They’re the side pieces of the food world.

The world doesn’t follow Ricky Bobby’s mantra of, “If you ain’t first, you’re last.” If you can’t get Kevin Hart in a role, just get Katt Williams. If Beyonce couldn’t headline Coachella, Rihanna could have stepped in and done just fine.

Being someone’s backup choice is something to be proud of — at least you’re in the game.

Without further ado, here is the Backup Food Choice Hall of Fame:


The most well-known backup option in the world has to be Pepsi. Through the years, they’ve tried to woo us with flavors, gimmicks, and celebrities such as, “Pepsi Man,” Beyonce, Britney, Pepsi Twist, and a strange energy drink called Pepsi X. They even tried to convince us that Pepsi was the future in, well, Back to the Future. Pepsi might not ever jump over Coca-Cola, but we have to give them props for always innovating, and reminding us how much we love Coke.

Five Guys Burgers

Is there a little West Coast bias in this entry? Maybe, but around these parts, we feel Five Guys is a solid backup option to In-N-Out burger. It’s nice that Five Guys offer so many toppings to mask their often over-seasoned burger, and that’s an honorable deed that’s not lost on this list. Salute to the five men who aren’t quite In-N-Out, but still get it done.

Burger King

Calling yourself the Burger “King” is bold, and being a top-5 restaurant chain in the world warrants bragging. Unfortunately for them, McDonald’s exists. If it weren’t for that red-headed clown and his iconic golden arches, Burger King could actually be king. BK still rides hard, though, often creating noise with trendy limited time offers such as Froot Loop shakes, Flamin’ Hot Mac n Cheetos, and Surge-flavored slushies.


Even with Chipotle hitting hard times, Qdoba is still looked at as the backup build-your-own burrito when you need to get white girl wasted. It’s probably not even fair, because Qdoba isn’t the one dishing out E. Coli every six months. Chipotle is weathering the storm, and that legendary guacamole seems to be keeping them afloat, while Qdoba chugs along with burritos that are just as good, yet just not quite as popular.

Del Taco

Here’s another solid fast food taco spot whose only fault is that it’s not Taco Bell. Del has a similar taco concept to Taco Bell, plus surprisingly good burgers and fries. Taco Bell just has more clout than them on a global scale, and always stays relevant with new products. Shout out to Del Taco for being open late, though. That’s always appreciated.


The Cup Noodles brand is so powerful that people inadvertently call Maruchan, “Cup Noodles.” There’s a good chance you saw the Maruchan photo above and said, “Don’t trash talk my Cup Noodles.” People still eat a lot of Maruchan, they just don’t realize it because as far as we’re concerned, every noodle in a cup is Cup Noodles. The power of Nissin’s effective branding.


Growing up, drinking Powerade was the equivalent of wearing off-brand shoes. Gatorade commercials had all the popular athletes, and they brainwashed us into wanting to scoop up all the electrolytes we can. You probably don’t even know what an electrolyte is, but Gatorade made you want it. Powerade usually has those grocery store bulk deals, so they at least win in that respect.

Peet’s Coffee

Starbucks pretty much runs the world at this point, right? As much as we like to say, “Support the little guy,” and try our darndest to find coffee elsewhere, but Starbucks is on every corner. Peet’s holds its own, however. If your city isn’t littered with Starbucks and actually gives you the Peet’s option, take it. While Peet’s is a pretty big chain in its own right, they’ll serve your dine-in coffee and baked goods in actual dishes. It actually makes you feel human, instead of like a vehicle passing through for fuel.


Let me start off by saying I love Ruffles. Cheddar and Sour Cream is my jam, but for whatever reason, those ridges sometimes turn people away. When you’re at a party and see a bowl of Ruffles and a bowl of Lays, those Lays disappear real quick, leaving Ruffles out in the cold. Y’all need to stop disrespecting Ruffles.


A post shared by 7UP (@7up) on

Usually, 7-Up is one of those drinks you enjoy at home, and hardly anywhere else. They’re rarely offered at restaurants, as we all know the lime soda of choice is typically Sprite. On that note, shout out to Mist Twist (though it’s still Sierra Mist to almost everybody) for being there when Sprite isn’t. It sucks not having Sprite, but you have to drink something.


Dunkin’ Donuts

Stacks on stacks on stacks 📸: @frostingandfettuccine

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They have “donuts” in the name, but you’re more likely to go there for their coffee than anything else. Sure, you can eat an OK donut there, but it will never match the warm feeling you get from a fresh Krispy Kreme donut. Yes, Krispy Kreme is the king of donuts, but Dunkin’ has the name power and will always be there to break your fall when you can’t get to a Krispy Kreme.


The Shakey’s experience is underrated, and the pizza is solid, but it unfortunately comes behind Chuck-E-Cheese’s, every time. Shakey’s was the birthday destination when you couldn’t get Chuck-E plans set up in time. Everything about Chuck felt magical, from the games, to the freaky animatronic band. Shakey’s is as good of a backup as there is, and it surely beats out Round Table. Oh, and have you ever had their mojo potatoes? Fire.

Sam’s Club Samples

Costco food samples are an event. It’s one of the reasons the warehouse is so enjoyable, especially as a kid. Sam’s Club has samples, too, so that’s good, I guess. Good for them. I’m sure some people enjoy Sam’s Club samples, but they sure as hell aren’t Costco.


Sure, KFC is the biggest fried chicken chain in the world, but if you put them side-by-side with Popeye’s and asked people to choose a crispy drumstick, Popeye’s would win that fight, hands down. There was a day when KFC’s 11 herbs and spices were all the hype, but the quality of Popeyes fried chicken has surpassed KFC, and has even gone global.

BONUS: Bobby Flay

Bobby Flay has become a bit of a household name, but he’s no Gordon Ramsay. Ramsay has become synonymous with celebrity chefs, and Flay is just behind him. The two have had a playful feud over the years, threatening a formal cook-off against each other, but never following through. Even then, we all know the fiery Scotsman would take down Flay.


Gatorade Used Zero CGI To Create This Insane ‘WATER MAN’

Practical effects are the reason why films like Jurassic Park and the original Star Wars trilogy were lauded as some of the best in their respective franchises. What one can accomplish with some ingenuity and dedication typically pays off in the long run.

Take Gatorade’s latest advertisement, for example. FStoppers reports that the sports beverage company created what they claim to be the world’s first “water man” without using any computer generated imagery.

Using 2,000 switches and triggers, millions of water drops are frozen in place with the assistance of strobe lights and caught on camera. This meticulous process is photographed thousands of times until the water forms an animated man doing a variety of active things.

Color us impressed, Gatorade. You can check out the minute-long ad in the video embedded above.

Wonder if a man made out of water gets thirsty?


Organic Gatorade Is Coming Soon, Says Pepsi


Looks like Gatorade is going organic.

Business Insider reports that the CEO of PepsiCo Americas Beverages, Al Carey, said the snack and beverage company will introduce a new organic variant of Gatorade sometime in the near future.

Thanks to consumer interest, the trend of wanting more products with non-genetically modified organisms and more organic options, PepsiCo will focus on making at least one version of the sports drink that meets those demands.

PepsiCo is looking expand the company outside of carbonated beverages. Their other product, Tropicana, will also feature some non-GMO juices sometime in 2016.


‘Hangover-Preventing’ Beer Adds Electrolytes, Decreases ABV, Is Practically Useless


What happens when Gatorade starts breaking into the beer belly market? Making “sports drinks” tailored specifically to those stalwart individuals who, much like Gatorade’s usual clientele, dedicate hours of their days to doing exactly what they do best (rain or shine, sickness or health, standing up or, more likely, lying down)?

Well when it does happen (and in a few years it will, trust us), we’re guessing it’ll look a little bit like this.

A group of Australian researchers has been working on a way to make beer more hydrating, i.e., less-punch-in-the-gut-hate-yourself-in-the-morning-oh-god-why-and-never-again. They discovered that by adding electrolytes (you know, those tiny invisible fireflies that make Gatorade and Vitamin Water magically good for you) and lowering the alcohol content, they could keep all of beer’s taste and only a margin of the “ugh!”.

Australia’s Sydney Morning Herald reports the researchers found the best results with the electrolyte-fortified light beer, which was up to a third more effective at hydrating drinkers than a normal beer. But you can’t help but wonder, what with the lower ABV and all, exactly how much more you’d have to drink just to get the same buzz? Or in other words, when I’m finally done drinking this stuff, will I still have the same level of hangover in the morning because I just so happened to overdo it, again?

Let’s just hope there’ll be plenty more research done between now and when Gatorade inevitably commercializes this idea, say three years down the road. Seriously guys, just do it.

H/T + PicThx HuffPo


Why Your Brain Craves the Taste of Beer Even if You Don’t

beer on the brain

Foodbeasts, I have a confession: I like drinking as much as the next guy (or girl), but if my only options are dark beer and grape-flavored cough medicine, I’ll take the cough medicine. Sure, the flavor is awful, but at least it’s not beer! And it’ll get you drunk that much faster.

Unfortunately, science says my brain may feel differently. As it turns out, the taste of beer, independent of the alcoholic content, may drive people to drink more — even if they prefer the flavor of something else.

Lemme break it down for you.

Recently, The Greatist took a peek at a study published in the journal of Neuropsychopharmacology. (That’s a real word! Take that, antidisestablishmentarianism!) The researchers snatched up 49 men from different backgrounds: social vs. heavy drinker; histories of alcoholism or drug use vs. none. The point is all the dudes were different dudes. Over the course of 15 minutes, each of these dudes swallowed 15 mL (about one teaspoon) of three different beverages: Gatorade, water, and their preferred beer. In order to avoid a buzz tampering with their results, researchers sprayed the beverages into each man’s mouth in three five-minute blocks. Just in case that teaspoon of beer got anyone a little tipsy. In other words, they took away the only reason anyone would want to drink beer, amirite?

Meanwhile, the science dudes were studying PET scans of the subject dudes’ brains. The scans found the levels of dopamine, the neurotransmitter responsible for the pleasure and reward centers of the brain, were much higher after drinking the beer as opposed to the Gatorade. Even higher than those levels were the levels of beer-drinkers who had family histories of alcoholism.

On top of that, even without their brains betraying them, the subject dudes reported a greater craving for the beer than the Gatorade, even though many of them preferred the taste of the latter.

That’s right, guys. You are powerless to your carnal urges.

Granted, this might not mean anything. It’s just the first experiment, and  it was only 49 dudes. Still, neuro-response to sensory stimuli is apparently a pretty common thing. It’s entirely possible our brains have had it in for us this whole time.

To that end, I’d like to see the study repeated with women. Apparently, the researchers couldn’t find enough ladies willing to choke down a whole teaspoon of beer. My suggestion? Let’s try the whole thing with coffee, and sign me up for all 49 spots.

H/T Greatist


Video: Gatorade's Warning


Video: Gatorade Super Bowl 2010 – "The Journey"


L-theanine: The New "Focus" of Beverage Companies

Every so often the beverage industry comes under scrutiny for any trend that they attempt to ride. The bubble was focused on Diet sodas for as long as I can remember, then the attention shifted to the levels of caffeine in certain drinks, and now we can facilitate the examination of L-theanine. Accoring to the LA Times, “the substance comes from the Camellia sinensis plant species, otherwise known as tea.” Drink labels are trying to tap into what their audience is in need for, and apparently, not everyone necessarily wants to get “jacked up” and experience an energy high. This specific substance, L-theanine, is meant to stimulate parts of the brain that will, in essence, help you focus. The amino acid can be found in certain new products of Gatorade, SoBe Lifewater, Vitamin Water an ViB, to name a few. Is this good or bad? Depends on the research you expose yourself to. The same conversation pieces that were once associated with caffeine and diet soda are sure to find new headway when exploring L-theanine. Either way, drink on!