12 "Noon to Midnight" Beverage

Oy. This is billed as an intelligent alternative to alcohol, so in the spirit of that lustful affirmation, I'm writing this in a slightly inebriated state. Where to start? On one hand, this beverage might get you accolades from your guests, who applaud your efforts to reach beyond the threshold of boorish alcoholic consumption. On the other hand, you might get punched in the gonads because this drink shits, and hard.Twelve is an interesting concept. For starters, you've got a nice 750 ml glass bottle with what's essentially juice inside. I have no problem with that. I find that an Arnold Palmer, the simplest of beverages, quenches my thirst better than everything on a hot day. But what's crammed inside this bottle is a mélange of clashing flavors that overwhelm and irritate the palate.The original flavor has more herbs and spices than a KFC in Greenwich, CT, and twice the audacity. From the second you crack open the screwcap on the bottle, the senses are agitated with pine, cloves, cinnamon and licorice on the nose, and a lighter fruity effervescence underneath. The combination of these flavors is truly aggravating. There is no healthy balance between the fruit and the spices, making the end result taste like you're sucking on a pomander and at best, with doctoring from outside sources, taste like a sugary chamomile tea.We earnestly tried to determine if we were misinterpreting Twelve in some way, but appreciating a non-alcoholic juice beverage simply shouldn't be this difficult. After each sip, we were faced with the unavoidable conclusion that drinking Twelve caused us to cringe and use swear words.I wish that this had tasted better, because I'd have loved to bring it to my fundamentalist Christian friends who abstain from drinking wine. They'd still be pussies, but at least they'd be quenched pussies who can enjoy the party. But in all honesty, I'd feel conflicted bringing this to any party. I can't see an edible compliment to this drink that wouldn't break under the intensity of the flavors, nor can I give a written compliment because I'm just disappointed in the construction of this beverage.

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