The brand most recommended is Vita Coco, a 100% natural product. It comes in lots of flavours including: plain, passion fruit (the one I tried), pineapple, peach & mango, and acai & pomegranate. Coconut water is full of electrolytes (which give your body energy) and potassium (which helps keep your body hydrated). It is fat free and cholesterol free. It is a fruit product, so there is naturally occurring sugar (my 11.7 oz pack had 18g- a little less than half of what's found in regular sodas). Vita Coco is also great, because it's packaged in Tetra Paks which are easier on the environment and can be recycled.
While I was at Whole Foods, preparing to gorge myself in the prepared foods section; I decided to give coconut water a try. The logic behind spending $40/week became clear- my single serving was over $2. This stuff better be good!
I liked the flavor of Vita Coco. It had just a hint of coconut but the passion fruit really came through. I did find it to be very sweet, so it may make for a good substitute to soda; maybe with a bit of club soda to add some fizz. The texture of a product is always a big deal for me. This one was a bit thicker than water, but less than juice (if that makes any sense). It is not unpleasant. My suggestion: this stuff tastes best when ice cold, so pour it into a tall glass of ice to enjoy.
While I enjoyed Vita Coco, and especially enjoyed that I was getting more potassium than two bananas (which is super important to me as I suffer from "growing pains" and Charley horses); the price makes this a "special treat" item only. They don't currently offer coupons directly, so I'll have to wait to see if Whole Foods ever puts it on sale. I'm not holding my breath.
Have you tried coconut water? What did you think?