More and more recently I've been hearing about the health benefits of pomegranates. This so called "super fruit" hero has been sweeping it's way across the internet and is seemingly gaining popularity amongst chefs, foodies, and the like for the last several years. Chocked full of anti-oxidants, vitamins, and other supposedly super powers, it seems it would be known as the "heal all of what ails you" fruit. (didn't they used to say that about the apple? then the orange? then I remember even more recently, the tomato?)
Of course, I'm sure pomegranates have been around since the dawn of time (certain of it in fact), but here in the Midwest, I'd never even so much as laid eyes upon a pomegranate until about 3 years or so ago. In fact, the only three things I really knew about pomegranates were;
a) they are used in the making of grenadine, a sweet syrup, commonly used in cocktails (of course I would know that!)
b) Martha Stewart talked about the health benefits and even showed how to extract the seeds one time on her show by cutting it in half then
c) Oprah had used a pomegranate juice to create a "pomtini" on one of her "favorite things" shows.
Of course I was intrigued and wanted to at least get an idea of what one tasted like. While I wasn't into Martha's method of extraction, ultimately putting forth waaaay more effort than I knew I ever would, I did like the sound of a "pomtini". So I bought some pomegranate juice, brought out the ol' cocktail shaker, and had myself an "Oprah pomtini". The so called juice (I can't remember the brand) was horrible, it was sour and tasteless, like watered down-not-enough-sugar Koolaid. Frankly, I didn't think much of pomegranates at this point, let alone understand all the hype in the media.
So, as you may have guessed, I was a bit skeptical when a representative from Pom Wonderful contacted me through my blog asking if I would be interested in trying some of their product, specifically, their pomegranate juice. I was curious though, and I absolutely love trying new products and experimenting with them, so this was a good time to give pomegranate juice a second chance. Thinking of course I would receive a (very small) "sample" sized bottle, imagine my surprise when a full "case" arrived. Their "case", consisted of 8, 8oz sized bottles.
The bottles were all sexy and cute with their hourglass shape and actually made me think I could have a sexy figure just by drinking it. (marketing genius I say) So of course, I couldn't wait to try it, and I have to tell ya, I didn't even wait until it was chilled. I immediately opened a bottle, but because of my past experience with pomegranate juice, I proceeded with caution. I did what any one of my girls would have done when they were little, which is, take an "itty bitty" sip. Then smacking my lips, I realized mmmmmm, this is pretty good. So I poured the rest into a glass. I took another (grownup sized) drink and found it to be full of flavor, not at all watered down, which to be honest, wasn't what I was expecting for a freebie. It was reminiscent of cranberry juice (only much better) but without being too tart and it was just naturally sweet enough that it didn't taste like sugared up flavored water. (the label says pure juice, no additives whatsoever) It was so good in fact that I stood there and drank the whole glass.
Ok, so now I had to decide what/how to experiment with it. Of course, the very first thing that came to mind, was a cocktail. I'm calling this one a.....
4 oz. Pom Wonderful pomegranate juice
2 oz. Unsweetened Pineapple juice
2 oz. Malibu Coconut Rum
1 oz. Amaretto
Place all in a cocktail shaker, add ice and shake vigorously until chilled. Pour into a cosmo style glass. (Ok, I'd fancy it all up with a garnish, a skewered pineapple and cherry perhaps, but I was totally into just getting 'er done)
O-M-G it was indeed awesome! Not at all what I remembered with the "Oprah pomtini". But hey, maybe this was the juice she was using? If not, she should....I'm just sayin'. In fact, after a few glasses, this cocktail was almost too sweet for me. I found myself wishing I had some vodka in the house, for this would make thee perfect "pomtini".
I'm not a huge juice drinker on a daily basis, but I could be with this stuff. So now, I'm refraining from drinking all of my juice, straight up, because I'd really like to do some more experimenting. My friend Margarite, over at Spryte's Place, recently received some Pom Wonderful too. She made some awesome looking Pomegranate Jelly that I'm just dying to try out. So I suppose that will be my next venture. I think I'd also like to try out a glaze of sorts, perhaps ham? or chicken? or pork? I'll let you know when I do.
To sum things up, I really, really liked the product. (I'd tell you if I didn't, even though it was a freebie) I would like to thank Molly and for giving me the opportunity to try out one of their many products. I can't attest to all of the health claims or benefits, I'll let the folks over on the Pom Wonderful site do that, but I can attest to the fact that I found it pretty darn tasty. However, my only suggestion for the company would be the price point. To be quite honest, it IS a bit pricey in the stores. I might be more apt to buy and try the other products if the prices were a bit more reasonable. One thing is for certain, this experience has changed my attitude towards pomegranates in general.