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A challenge that I never thought I would have is to get teenaged boys to eat food. And yet someone I ended up with kids who don't always eat enough, although not because they are picky eaters. In conversations about how to making putting nutrition in their bodies on a regular basis, particularly when in an environment where they have to be responsible for their own caloric intake, one of us suggested Soylent as an occasional meal supplement. And since I am a person who likes to gather data (even though I actually like food and intend to continue eating it), I suggested we all try out various forms and flavors.

It is unfortunately difficult to acquire a Soylent tasting pack, as the site only sells the liquid version by the 12x (and powder by a week's worth of meals). I mean, it's possible, in that several entrepreneurs offer such a thing, 1x bottle of each of the 4 different flavors, but it is approximately the same cost as a single case. I decided that a) it would be a fun thing to share with other people, and b) we could probably finish up a case of each flavor eventually, as it doesn't go bad. So I ordered that. I also ordered samples of Schmilk, a food-replacement mix that is meant to be mixed with milk, gets decent reviews, comes in small sample packs, and the guy who runs it is responsible and friendly.

Thus I had a *lent tasting party, with about ~10 people, plastic shotglasses, 7 flavors of food-replacement drinks, and some real food to get the taste of non-food out of your mouth if needed. We wrote down comments, and the results were amusing and fun, so I figured I'd share them more publicly.

Reviewed flavors:
Soylent Ready-To-Drink bottles
1) Original,
2) Cacao,
3) Nectar,
4) Coffiest;
SuperBodyFuel Schmilk powder mixed with 2% milk
5) Original,
6) Chocolate,
7) Cinnamon.

1) Soylent Original:
a) Like a liquid graham cracker
b) Thick soy milk
c) Tastes like powdered milk
d) Soy and oatmeal
e) Very neutral
f) Like soymilk
g) Like Ensure but more boring and bland.

2. Soylent Cacao (chocolate)
a) Meh.
b) Melted malted milkshake, with aftertaste (but less than the chocolate schmilk)
c) Little bit of malt; little bit of grit
d) ovaltine
e) metallic taste
f) this one reminds me less of Ensure. Not bad but boring.
g) smells like less than nothing
h) Yoohoo sat in the sun too long and started to sour

3. Soylent Nectar
a) So that's that happens if you mix soymilk with lemon Pledge.
b) This gets less nasty as I drink...Not sure how I feel about that.
c) I got J├Ągermeister. I was not expecting that.
d) Liquid air freshener
e) Whatever this is the nectar of, I wouldn't bother to eat
f) Better than Original
g) Very floral, like bad tasting flowers
h) candy wrappers
i) This is what artificial desperation tastes like
j) I feel unclean.

4. Soylent Coffiest
a) Rotten
b) Might be good with milk and sugar added
c) like coffee
d) :-P
e) ummm coffee drink like the premixed Starbucks with more cream
f) like bitter coffee
g) like Ensure, but with coffee
h) I've tasted both better and worse
i) mildly gritty but mildly pleasant
j) this is a rejected Starbucks drink

5. Schmilk Original
a) Meh.
b) Ground up cereal of an unknown origin
c) blended oatmeal and milk, with sugar
d) oatmeal. Better than Soylent Original
e) like blended cereal
f) cheerios powder and milk

6. Schmilk Chocolate
a) Not horrible, but meh.
b) aftertaste ruins it all
c) like old halloween chocolate
d) bitter tears of Count Chocula.

7. Schmilk Cinnamon
a) It's basically Cinnamon Chex. Somewhat gritty.
b) That's something that may be worth drinking
c) Cinnamon Toast Crunch left in milk and blended.
d) Cookie dough-ish
e) Horchata mixed with snickerdoodle batter
f) Eggnog, less sweet, add cinnamon cookie water
g) Like cinnamon oatmeal

Basically almost everybody there agreed that Soylent Nectar was The Worst (which is a minor problem in that I still have 8 bottles left that nobody really wants to drink), and Schmilk Cinnamon was close to the best by itself. Soylent Original and Schmilk Original were popular for their simplicity (and not tasting TOO good). Soylent Coffiest was possibly the most controversial.
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