We love Boston. We love it. We love it in the most classic ways: from the Freedom Trail to the Public Garden ducklings to Fenway Park and TB12 (come on Tom, take that house off the market).
But we also love it in its more subtle ways.
From its sprawling bike paths and gritty dive bars to candlepin and Keytar Bear.
And here's the thing:
Whether you love Boston or hate it, nobody can deny this one fact: there’s a lot of passion here in this city. And that’s really the thing we love the most.
So, when it comes to Boston brands – whether they’re booming establishments or scrappy young companies – the ones we love most don’t just have killer products, they’re also backed by founders with the kind of unrelenting passion that in our mind is quintessentially Boston.
And we want to give a shout out to some of our very favorites. So join us every Thursday for the next month for our 4 part series: Boston Brands We Love.
Bringing us to this week’s post:
3 Boston Brands We Love (The Rising Star Edition)
1. Drink Tru – Natick, MA
Sometimes sports drinks feel like – well – kind of a racket. Often glowing with a supernatural fluorescent hue (ala teenage mutant ninja turtles), these drinks are usually loaded with sugar, caffeine, and artificial flavors. In other words, three of the least healthy, easiest-to-crash-from additions you could make to any consumable good.
But you won’t find any of that here. Drink Tru is all about the all-natural. From the flavors they add to the actual color of their drinks.
However, it’s not just the product we like. It’s the founder, too. We mean, this guy is funny, man. Just take a look at his self-made-with-a-selfie-stick commercial he shot solo at a gym. But not just any gym. The gym where he lives. No, literally, he lives in the backroom of a gym to cut costs for his business. Now THAT’S the kind of dedication we can get behind.
As a former pro-hockey player, founder Jack McNamara, formulated his company’s energy drinks, or “sports shots” as they’re trademarked, by talking to athletes about where others fall short. From high school athletes to dieticians to pro-athletes, he found most people were looking for more natural, less sugar, and more vitamins. So that’s what he built. All-natural. No GMOs. Vegan. Loaded with electrolytes and 10+ vitamins.
Drink Tru now offers performance drinks that help with everything from focus and energy to relaxation and sleep. Oh, and hangovers. Yep, fortified by a scientifically researched hangover aid, Tru Rescue Drink “helps to ward off debilitating headaches and nausea caused by a night of debauchery and drinking”.
Check out all of their offerings here.
2. Slate Milk – Boston, MA
Get this. Slate Milk – a chocolate milk company – was founded by two lactose intolerant entrepreneurs from Northeastern. Wait, what? We know. We were intrigued too.
But it’s not just their story that we’re into. It’s their delicious, protein-packed, super low in sugar, all-natural, gluten-free, nut-free, soy-free, GMO-free, dark & frothy chocolate milks that we’ve recently become obsessed with too.
The best part is, judging from how good they taste, you’d never guess that they’re actually good for you.
To put it in the words of the Slate Milk crew:
We’ve become conditioned to believe everything that tastes good is bad for our health. Here at Slate, we respectfully disagree.
YES. THIS. 6AM Health has met its chocolate-milk-spirit-animal.
Delicious. Protein-packed. With 75% less sugar than regular chocolate milk. What’s not to love? Oh, and of course, all of their milks are completely lactose-intolerant-friendly as they are all lactose-free. (The founders have to like what they sell too, after all.)
Check out the side by side comparison of how Slate Milk fares amongst all the other milks out there:
Between that, the founders’ seriously awesome passion for chocolate milk, the actual taste of the milk, and the fact that we’re suckers for sleek packaging – Slate Milk is one of our new favorite rising Boston brands.
3. Beam – Boston, MA
Take one former pitcher for the Chicago White Sox + one former pro-hockey player + some classic pro-athlete injuries, and what do you get?
Beam CBD Products.
Beam was born after Kevin Moran and Matt Lombardi searched high and low, trying just about everything to help them recover from the aches and pains that came from being so active every day. Until one day, they discovered...CBD.
"CBD changed our lives. We saw firsthand how it reduced our inflammation and eased our pain. We were sleeping better. We were less anxious. We had more energy."
The problem? They found it difficult to find effective CBD products that met their standards and did not contain trace amounts of THC. Because currently, CBD is a tough world to navigate. Most often, people don't know exactly what they're getting.
Beam's goal is to remove this confusion. And a lot of what they're doing revolves around transparency and education.
Because there are a lot of common misconceptions about CBD products. We mean, it is derived from a cannabis plant after all. So, its parents are basically Willy Nelson and Janis Joplin – a hard image to free yourself from as a regular-CBD-Joe just trying to break into the world of medicine.
But Matt and Kevin are in it to change this stigma. With all of their products completely transparent in their ingredients and 100% THC-free, their mission is to produce a cleaner, better, and totally natural CBD. And we could not love what they're doing more.
The long and the short of it?
*We heart you* Tru, Slate, & Beam. Keep doin' what you're doin'. Want to learn more? Check out their websites here:
Join us again next week for round 2 of "The Thursday Three: Boston Brands We Love" (the hidden gem edition!)
Until then, stay energized, happy, and well!
Photo cred: Josephine Baran