Orange juice wars

Is premium orange juice really worth the price? asked Lisa McManus in Cook

Is premium orange juice really worth the price? asked Lisa McManus in Cook’s Illustrated. Lately, all kinds of “fresh squeezed–style orange juices” have been showing up in supermarkets. We recently tasted a few nationally available super-premium brands alongside “not from concentrate” varieties and freshly squeezed juice made in our test kitchen. Our verdict:

Natalie’s Orchid Island Juice Company ($4.99 for 64-oz jug) The clear winner. “The only juice to give fresh-squeezed a run for its money.”

Tropicana Pure Premium 100% Pure and Natural Orange Juice With Some Pulp ($3.99 for 64-oz carton) Recommended. Last year’s tasting winner was admired for its good overall flavor.

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Tropicana Pure Valencia Orange Juice ($3.50 for 33.8-oz bottle) Also recommended, though some thought it tasted “more like tangerine than orange.”

Bolthouse Farms 100% Valencia Orange Juice ($3.99 for 33.8-oz bottle) Recommended, with reservations. Very sugary, acidic taste; lots of pulp.

Naked All-Natural Just Juice 100% Orange Juice ($9.99 for 64-oz jug) Not recommended. Tasters’ comments included “cooked cardboard taste,” “floral, without much orange flavor,” and “bleh.”

Odwalla Orange Juice ($7.59 for 64-oz jug) Also not recommended. “Tastes like orange rind,” said one taster.

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