When it comes to cracking open a fizzy, (hopefully) refreshing, nonalcoholic beverage, I often find myself in somewhat of a gray area. I didn’t grow up drinking soda and find most of them too cloying to get beyond a few sips. Likewise, the invisible “natural flavors” of the seltzer boom never quite landed for me. So when Bawi Sparkling Agua Fresca crossed my radar, my interest was piqued. Sparkling water, fruit juice, and a dash of (real) sugar? Now we’re talking.
Created in Austin by college friends Victor Guardiola and Jordan Hicks, the Bawi Sparkling Agua Fresca is an updated homage to the agua frescas that Guardiola was nostalgic for from his childhood in Monterrey, Mexico. The pair experimented with a variety of juice combos, ultimately landing on a trio of flavors—El Limón, La Maracuyá (passion fruit), and La Piña. The lime and passion fruit each get dosed with just enough cane sugar to bring the sour fruits into balance, while the pineapple, being sweet enough already, is tarted up with a hint of lime. While I’m typically a sucker for anything passion fruit, my fave of the trio was La Piña—fizzy, fruit-forward, and decidedly refreshing. $39.99/12-pack, drinkbawi.com