As thirst quenchers, coconut water does a great job. It contains natural electrolytes to help you hydrate, and is a natural alternative to plain water.
Though creamy coconut shakes are trending now, there will always be a place for good old coconut water: it is cheaper and less calorific than the shake version, something we’ve long regarded as a refrigerator staple in this hot, humid weather.
With so many brands of bottled coconut water in the market, you’re basically spoilt for choice. But fret not, for we’ve reviewed them for you. We sipped our way through dozens of brands in search of the tastiest coconut water.
1. Cocoloco [Editor's rave]
$3.95 for 270ml or $23.70 for six 270ml bottles, available at cocoloco.sg
While we all balked at the price ─ it was the most expensive of the lot ─ this is as close as it gets to the real deal, minus the chore of having to crack open a fresh coconut on your own. The natural sweetness of the Thai coconuts shone through as there is no pasteurising or preservatives involved.
2. Just Picked CocoWater [Great find]
Compared to Cocoloco, Just Picked CocoWater has a more inconsistent flavour. Some packets are sweeter while others have a tinge of sourness – perhaps it all boils down to the luck of the draw, since even fresh coconuts vary in sweetness. Most of all, we’re pleased that it tastes pretty natural.
3. UFC Coconut Water [Great Find]
From $1.95 for 500ml, available at major supermarkets
In third place and a tad more bland than Just Picked CocoWater, this is cloudy but is among the most natural-tasting among supermarket brands. Plus, it’s affordable, which might explain why stocks tend to run out fast.
4. Cocomax 100 per cent Coconut Water
$1.95 for 500ml or $7.90 for six 350ml bottles, available at Fairprice
It’s fragrant, refreshing and not sweet. A great alternative if water gets too boring for you. Tip: freeze it in an ice tray and make mini popsicles. They won’t be sticky (because, zero added sugar) and they make for a guiltless treat on a hot day.
5. If Local Sensation Coconut Bottle Water
$1.50 for 330ml, available at major supermarkets and 7-eleven
It’s not easy to keep coconut water tasting fresh for more than a couple of months. But the guys at If figured out a way to prolong the shelf life of their coconut water without adding any preservatives – cold aseptic filling system. Don’t worry, the taste isn’t affected. It’s just the right amount of sweetness and natural flavour.
6. Vita Coco Natural Coconut Water
$1.60 for 330ml, available at major supermarkets
Good if you like a fairly natural taste although it has a slightly more pronounced sour nuance than the first three brands. This makes for a reasonable alternative if your other favourite brands are not available.
7. Coco Life Coconut Water
$1.50 for 330ml, available at major supermarkets
No artificial taste or sour note with this coconut water but there was a distinct caramelly scent and slightly cloying aftertaste.
8. Cocoxim 100 per cent Organic Coconut Water
$2 for 330ml or $24.50 for 12 x 330ml bottles, available at amazon.sg
All of Cocoxim’s coconuts come from the brand’s own farm in the Ben Tre Province in Vietnam, and there are no preservatives in Cocoxim’s tetra packs of coconut water, resulting in a refreshing, slightly sweeter taste. The brand also offers coconut water in two other flavours – pineapple and lotus seed – if you’re bored of the regular taste.
9. Ice Cool Young Coconut Juice
$1.40 for 500ml, available at major supermarkets
Before coconut water became synonymous with yoga and wellness, Ice Cool was already a stalwart in the local market, selling cans of its crisp and refreshing young coconut juice to keep locals less “heaty”. This is perfect for those who like a little bit of bite, thanks to the young coconut pulp thrown in the mix.
10. ZICO Natural Coconut Water Drink
$1.85 for 330ml, available at major supermarkets
Non-GMO, gluten-, and cholesterol-free, and made without any added sugar, Zico’s coconut water is less sweet than its competitors.
The juice is made from blending young coconuts – originating from Thailand, Indonesia, and the Philippines – with semi-mature ones, and is extremely satisfying to sip on chilled after working up a sweat in this humidity.