pür gum – pomegranate mint

This review is sponsored by our friends at pür gum!

Flavor: First and foremost, it’s important to note that this gum is all natural and sugar free, as discussed in Shannon’s review of pur peppermint. That said, the fruity variety does leave something to be desired, as the first bite is reminiscent of children’s Tylenol and fades not even five minutes into the chew. If pressed to define the flavor, I might go with “pomegranate,” although I do feel that on the whole most pomegranate flavors are just sort of generically sweet and appeal to that “this is interesting and good for me” side of society. Pomegranate, these days, is like bikram yoga, or the term “green–” a fad for the health-conscious, trend-following public.
Texture: For a sugar-free, all natural gum, pur is really a stand-up competitor. I’d say that one pellet provides a rather insubstantial chew, and a second pellet would probably be necessary for an optimal experience. It doesn’t stick to your teeth like a lot of natural gums, and it doesn’t go hard like sugary gums.

Presentation: It’s as simple as the gum itself– it says what it is and that’s what you get. Aspartame free. No artificial flavors. No artificial colors. Ok, so an umlaut and the word “pomegranate” is slapped on there for a marketing pull, but you’ve got to have some kind of gimmick nowadays, what with Stride Shift and React stirring up such controversy and gathering so many followers. This line is Canadian, but I think on sheer composition alone, could stand a chance in the big scary world of U.S. sales and marketing.

Overall: Glowing compliments aside, I’m not crazy about this flavor. I think in time, this company may compose a much more enjoyable fruity variety. For now, this one just is no fun to chew. I graduated to adult Tylenol long ago, and was never so thrilled with the flavor of chewables to seek it out in gum form any time soon.

Rating: ooo (three gumballs)

Oh! And only one day left to enter the big contest!!!

pür gum – Peppermint

This review is sponsored by our friends at pür gum!

Flavor: A clean, refreshing, natural tasting peppermint. The initial punch is pleasantly strong, without too much of a nasal-clearing menthol sensation. It mellows into a long-lasting minty chew.

Texture: Your standard pellet crunch, followed by a period of a slight too-tough texture. Upon prolonged chew, say 5 minutes or so, it does soften up to a more pleasant malleability, although it remains a firmer than average chew from start to finish. This might not be a bad thing to some chewers, though. I know that I myself occasionally prefer to chew a gum that has a bit less “give” to it.

Presentation: Absolutely minimalist. No fancy graphics, just plain text in a sans serif font that’s easy on the eye. I love this packaging, though I suspect that one might look a tad pretentious when pulling this out of your purse or pocket to share. “What kinda new-wave freaky gum do you chew, man! Just gimme some Trident!”

Overall: pür gum is a new gum from Action Candy out of Canada. Their claim to fame is that it’s all natural and sugarfree, a quality I haven’t seen yet from a gum. It proudly boasts “no artificial flavors,” “no artificial colors” and “infused with antioxidants” on its packaging. And an interesting side note – the ingredients list does not include soy or soy lecithin, a quality I was hard-pressed to find in gum when I was eating soy-free a couple months ago due to my daughter’s allergies. In fact, it was downright impossible for me to find a gum that was soy-free and sugarfree. And speaking of the ingredients list, there are only seven – seven! – ingredients in this gum, and all of them are easy to pronounce! The pack of Trident I happen to have closest to me has sixteen , no less than half of which are chemicals. This is a groundbreaking idea in gum, and it doesn’t taste half-bad, either. If this were a Dentyne or Orbit White pellet, it would probably only get 4 gumballs due to the texture, but when you weigh in the multitude of benefits this gum packs, the good certainly outweighs the one negative point. Bravo, pür.
Rating: ooooo (five gumballs)

Extra Peppermint

Flavor: There’s really nothing special to say about the flavor of Extra Peppermint, because it’s really not designed to be a special kind of gum. Extra Peppermint is an Everyman’s gum – the kind of gum you mindlessly pick up when, on your way to the beach at 7:30 on a Saturday morning, you’re standing on line at the 7-11 waiting to pay for your iced coffee and you realize that you forgot a pack of gum and the only munchies you have to eat on the beach are Pepperoni Pizza Combos. (Wow, that turned into way more of a run-on sentence than I had anticipated.) It’s just a peppermint gum, a simple breath freshener. And as with most Extras, the flavor lasts an extra, extra, extra long time.

Texture: It starts off almost frighteningly soft, but within a minute or so it firms right up.

Presentation: You know how sometimes you stare at a word for too long, and it starts to become a weird non-word, and doesn’t even sound right to say? That’s what’s happening to me looking at the packaging of this gum. It’s just your standard pocket pack that most gums come in these days, but something’s weird about it. Did they recently change the font of the Extra logo or something? Anyway, the package is as simple as the gum, little more than a logo and some blue peppermint leaves. It might as well be all white and have a Dharma logo on it, it’s that generic.

Overall: Ashley on our facebook page requested this gum, and I’m pretty happy that she did. Being Gum Girls, our gum queues are often long and stocked with crazy flavor concoctions so it’s not often that we get to go back to basics with our gum. We’re just never faced with that “oh MAN I just need some GUM” dilemma – we always have gum. Chewing this pack of Extra Peppermint has been a really pleasant change for me, and while there’s no bells and whistles and you’re not likely to have an “experience” chewing it, it’s just a really good gum that gets things done. Much like Trident Original, I feel like I would be being unfair if I didn’t give it five gumballs.Rating: ooooo (five gumballs)

P.S. Don’t forget to enter our contest! You only have until June 30th! http://www.gumalert.com/2010/06/win-gum-prize-pack-from-gum-alert.html

GumAlert FAQ

We’ve had a recent influx of visitors, emails and comments lately, and we thought that it might help our readers if we had an FAQ. Please to enjoy.

Do you work for the gum companies? Can I suggest a new flavor?
No, we don’t work for any gum company, we’re just a couple of girls who like to to chew gum! We’d love to hear your gummy ideas, though!

I work for a gum company. Can I send you samples of gum to review?
Sure! We love free gumz and we’ll be happy to review it, just know that our reviews will always be honest and truthful. Send us an email at gumgirls@gumalert.com and we’ll work something out.

I have a gum or candy blog, too! Can I be added to your “Friend of GumAlert” links?
We’d love to check out your blog! Send us a link and we’d be happy to give it a read. If we like it, we’ll link it! Generally, it has to have been around for a while. If you have only a few posts or have been blogging for only a short while, we probably won’t link you. But keep it up!

I own an online candy store. Can you add a link to my store on your blog?
We’re sure that your store is great, but we don’t like to direct our readers to online merchants that we are unfamiliar with. What you can do is send us some gum samples for us to review, and we’ll add a “This review has been sponsored by…” link on the review itself. (Just know that our reviews are always honest and truthful.) If the relationship grows positively, we’ll add a link to your store on our sidebar.

I have a product or website that I would like to advertise on Gum Alert. Can I give you money to put an ad on your site?
Even though Trident Layers would like you to think that gum lovers prefer to be paid in gum, these gum lovers prefer to be paid in money. Send us an email and we’ll let you know our rates and policies.

You guys haven’t reviewed my all-time favorite gum! What gives?
We probably just haven’t gotten around to it yet! Send us an email and let us know what you want to see us review!

OMG there’s a new gum out! Have you seen it yet??
No, we haven’t!! Awesome!! Email us and tell us about it! Where did you see it? Did you try it? Was it good?? We always have our eye out for new gums, but we could always use your help in seeking out the cool new gumz.

I feel very strongly about a new gum or gum commercial I saw on TV, and I would like to post about it in your comments section using bad words and racial slurs. Is that okay?
While we love to hear your opinion about gum, our reviews, and gum culture as a whole, we want gum fans of all ages to be able to enjoy Gum Alert, so we ask that you keep your language in the comments section at a PG level. If we think something is offensive, we’re going to remove your comment.

How do you guys decide what gum to review, and how do you review it?
We usually go in this order: Samples companies send us, new gum, requests, and then anything else. We’ll try to mix it up if we get a few packs of the same brand or flavor, though, so we don’t do too many of the same thing in a row. We only have one rule when it comes to doing the reviews, and that is that we must be chewing a piece of the gum while we review it.

Are you guys related?
Yes, we are sisters, unfortunately for our parents.

Don’t you have anything better to do than write long-winded blog posts about gum?
Not really.

Get a life.
That’s not a question.

Why do you do it?
We started GumAlert in April of 2009 because we thought it would be funny. We thought that the ultimate goal would be to get free gum from gum companies, but that happened pretty fast. Now, our goal is to attend the Sweets and Snacks Expo in Chicago in 2012. (We still love to get free gum, though. That never gets old.)

Does Trident Layers have pork in it?
From what we’ve been able to ascertain, Trident Layers does have a form of gelatin in its ingredients that is derived from pork, as do many other types of gum. Your best bet would be to contact the manufacturers directly just to make sure, if you avoid pork for religious or other reasons.

Aren’t you worried about artificial sweeteners?
Kind of. We chew a lot of gum. Really, a lot of gum, and we do sometimes question the safety of sweeteners. That being said, we’re not experts on the risks and benefits, and wouldn’t want to sway anyone one way or the other. We recommend that you do your own research and make the educated decision that’s best for you regarding your personal consumption of artificial sweeteners.

What’s the flavor of Stride Mega Mystery?
There’s a rumor that a Stride employee leaked the flavor as Strawberry Daiquiri. We don’t taste that particularly, but we do think that it has a definite tropical drink flavor to it.

Is Stride Shift Berry to Mint good?
No.

Is Stride Shift Citrus to Mint gross?
Yes.

What’s so special about 5 React gum? What does it do?
Right? We have no idea.

Can you eat gum wrappers, like Trident, Stride or Orbit?
We’re not sure the official answer to this one, but we don’t recommend eating any gum wrappers. We don’t think it would taste good, and it certainly would mess up the texture. EDIT: Brian from Candy Addict referred us to this post in his blog with the definitive answer. Thanks, Brian!

What is your favorite gum?
Shannon’s favorite gum is Extra Polar Ice. Katie’s favorite gum us Trident Minty Sweet Twist. However, we like all kinds of gumz. We’re partial to sugarless gum because we don’t like the dentist very much, but the amount of xylitol running through our bloodstreams on any given day might eventually make us sick, too.

Dentyne Pure Mint with Herbal Accents

Flavor : Shannon has already reviewed the basics of the Pure gum varieties in her review of Dentyne Pure Mint with Melon Accents, but I think we disagree on some points. As with Siskel and Ebert, I suppose the occasional disagreement is healthy. To avoid redundancy, I’ll speak on some different features of the flavor that are unique to Mint with Herbal Accents. Lots of gums these days claim to taste like “real” things– Orbit’s “Real fruit flavor!” claim, to name just one, is smacked on every phony uber-sucralose strawberry-esque gum (I’m not sticking Strawberry Mint in my rhubarb pie any time soon.). Dentyne Pure really does pack a “real” flavor– an almost peppery, subtle spice undertone that’s most noticable with the first bite but is present throughout the entire chew. Although I don’t know any natural element that would cool my mouth quite so much other than, say, ice, but there’s something natural in there that does come through.

Texture : The initial bite is the best part– a thin crunchy outer shell and a rather soft gum base, with a little burst of liquid on the inside. It’s a delicate chew, softer than other gums, and I have to admit that it can get a little too soft after a while. But pack after pack, I’ve looked forward to that first refreshing crunch, so much so that I’ve been through at least four packs before saving a pellet for a review. It should be noted, however, that leaving a pack in the car will cause the inner goo to dissolve into the gum base, providing for a much less exciting, but still delightful, bite.

Presentation : Another day, another gimmick. This one’s supposed to “purify your breath,” and yammers on lots of sciency sounding reasons why this gum will make your breath smell better than other gum. “Neutralizes bad breath odors caused by bacteria and food.” I think “neutralize” implies a stable balance– a tasteless ground zero that would leave your palate untainted and prepared for new flavors. I’m not sure I’d want a sip of say, red wine or orange juice after chewing a piece of this gum (although I’m sure it wouldn’t take much convincing). In the end, it’s just a tasty piece of gum to me. There’s nothing sanitizing, neutralizing, or purifying about it.

Overall : It’s yummy, it tastes natural, and I’m sure there are some kind of sciency benefits to chewing “NeutraFRESH.” This gum has quickly become a go-to gum for me.

Rating : ooooo (five gumballs )

Oh, also, enter our contest. Win gum from the folks who know gum.

Win a Gum Prize Pack from Gum Alert!

Hey Gum Alert minions!

To celebrate the summer, we’re giving away a Prize Pack of gumz! To enter, just write a comment on this entry telling us what your favorite gum is, and why. We’ll pick a winner at random to receive a selection of our favorite and not so favorite gum.

Make sure to include your email address* so we can contact you if you win! (You might want to format it like: name AT email DOT com to avoid spam, if you like.)

Tell all your friends to enter, and hurry! Contest ends Wednesday, June 30th at midnight.

*Only one entry per e-mail address, please. Sorry, family members of the Gum Girls are not eligible to win. Good luck!

Trident Splash Pucker Me Berry

Flavor: It’s hard not to compare this to the phenomenal Orbit Mist Raspberry Lemon Dew,
because everything about that gum is just right, and it set the standard for “lemonade” in my brain. That being said, this gum is dull, dull, dull. With a name like “Pucker Me Berry” I expect at least some tartness, but even at first bite there’s little else but sweetness, and a vague sweetness at that. There’s a liquid goo center that I suppose could be classified as tart, but it fades away too quickly to qualify for a featured headline. The package features strawberry and raspberry, but I don’t taste either fruit very strongly. All that being said, it’s not a bad flavor.

Texture: We open with our standard pellet candy shell crunch, followed by a period of about 5 minutes of “This is waaaaay too soft.” It takes a good while for the gum to mature into anything that has any substance to it, and even then, it remains pretty sticky, and has a tendency to cling to your teeth and lips if you attempt to blow a bubble.

Presentation: It’s nothing we haven’t seen before, but it is worth noting that this is the first time I’ve seen this incarnation of Trident Splash – previously, the Trident Splash logo was centered and large on the front of the package, with the fruit/ice cream/starlight mint graphics hiding behind. It doesn’t make all that much difference aesthetically, since from the get-go Trident Splash has always had one of the busier packagings, almost obnoxiously so. This is a tween’s gum, for kids who have outgrown Big League Chew-stuffing contests, but are too young to carry a minimalist-looking Orbit around.

Overall: Eh, it’s alright. If I was 12 years old, this would get 4 gumballs, solid. But I’m not 12 years old, I’m 31 (at least for another week,) and this flavor just doesn’t cut it with me. It’s a blister pack full of empty promises.
Rating: oo (two gumballs)

Juicy Fruit Sweet Fruit

Flavor (and Presentation): I feel as though flavor and texture need to be combined for this review. So it was said, and so it shall be. I guess I’m kind of confused. The idea is sort of like a spinoff movie– from the guys who brought you Juicy Fruit, now Juicy Fruit Sweet Fruit! But… isn’t that kind of redundant? My point here is that the guys who brought us Juicy Fruit are also the guys that brought us 5, Orbit, Hubba Bubba, Doublemint, and on and on in a wide variety of flavors, textures, and gimmicks. So what gives? What does this gum have to do with Juicy Fruit? Not much of anything, if you ask me. So why not include it in the Orbit pellet family, or in a new Wrigley family altogether? It’s a pretty good gum, and has a fairly unique and pleasurable watermelon flavor. In fact, although it’s named “Sweet Fruit,” the package is sprinkled with watermelon and kiwis. And that’s what it is, if I had to describe it– it’s a watermelon kiwi pellet gum. It certainly isn’t Juicy Fruit, though, especially since the new sugar-free Juicy Fruit pellets are a pretty large deviation from classic Juicy Fruit to begin with. It barely resembles the new, unfamiliar Juicy Fruit. It’s a new gum trapped inside an old gum’s body. Much like the movie Vice Versa, it’s really enjoyable, but it probably will become sort of a cult classic and forgotten with the next round of gimmicky gum wrappers.
Texture: It has a nice sugary (-esque) crunch with the initial bite and maintains a consistent chew, not too soft or hard at any point. But just one pellet is useless as far as I’m concerned. In this case, I think at least 3 are required for a decent experience, which warrants the enormous plastic container in which it is sold. It should be noted that there’s a large plastic door on top for “sharing” and a mini-door on the back of the bottle if you only want one piece. Since I advise against having only one piece, however, I’m rather unimpressed with this feature.
Overall: I think this watermelon-kiwi newbie never got a chance to stand on its own. It will forever live in the shadow of Juicy Fruit– to which no gum could or should really ever be compared. Anyone who picks up a Juicy Fruit container will expect some semblance of Juicy Fruit and will be in some sense disappointed. Hopefully some folks will recognize its true potential, and it will live on beyond its ill-fated label.
Rating: ooo (three gumballs )