It's cheap and good and doesn't come with an identity crisis

By Margaret Eby
Updated February 13, 2018
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EC: Forget LaCroix, Reach for Target's Sparkling Water
Credit: Image Courtesy Target

Somewhere around my 25th year, I became a seltzer fiend. For years I was happy with plain, uncarbonated water, and then something in my taste buds broke and I had to have sparkling water, club soda, or seltzer at least once a day. I'm on board with LaCroix, particularly when it's free at the office, but I'm not a diehard. I'm as likely to pick up a Polar seltzer or a Spindrift as a LaCroix. But my brand disloyalty also has its perks, because I hit upon a LaCroix alternative that's cheap, delicious, and available where I have to pick up my socks and facewash anyway: Target's line of Simply Balanced Sparkling Water.

At $2.99 for a pack of eight cans, Target's brand of sparkling water is extremely reasonably priced. (At my home store in Brooklyn, it's actually cheaper than LaCroix, but your personal grocery store milage may vary.) Their flavors are very good: Citrus, Lime, Lemon, Grapefruit, Watermelon, Tropical Cherry, Raspberry Blackberry, Ginger Peach, and Cucumber Mint. Sure, there's no Peach-Pear or Coconut, but Ginger Peach has a nice light spicy-sweetness that pairs well with the swelteringly hot days that are ahead of us for the next three months.

The Grapefruit, in particular, I like better than the LaCroix equivalent—it tastes more like someone just squeezed an actual grapefruit into your water. And like LaCroix, you can use them for your summer cocktail needs—to say, cut down the sweetness of some free wine or make a lighter version of your favorite drink.