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Hydro Flask 64 oz Wide Mouth Vacuum-Insulated Stainless Steel Growler, $50, www.hydroflask.com
The Good: Ridiculously awesome insulating properties. Large enough for a days worth of fluid.
The Bad: There are no cup holders big enough to handle this growler. Wide mouth presents the risk of spilling your beverage all over your face.
The Ugly: You pretty much need two hands to drink from it.
First off, let me say that I love insulated containers. Living in an area where the temperatures reach 120 degrees in the summer, am I rarely in an environment where the ambient air temperature is the same as my desired beverage temperature, and an insulated container is a must, and Hydro Flask’s vacuum-insulated Growler is one of the best around. While the initial sticker shock might deter one from purchasing this container, let me assure you that it is a worthwhile investment.
Hydro Flask uses a double walled vacuum to insulate its contents. The idea behind this is that by creating a vacuum, there are fewer molecules to transmit heat and cold to the contents of your container. Just comparing this to my insulated Kleen Kanteen, Hydro Flask has superior insulating properties. It feels like the temperature only changes by a degree or two.
I use my growler almost daily, usually to carry a ginormous smoothie or a big batch of tea. I drink it over the course of the day and I’ve noticed that chunks of ice don’t melt. I actually find this annoying when I am nearing the end of my beverage because I wasn’t planning on the ice outlasting my drink. I’ve carried the growler in a backpack, by the cap loop and also in my bike panniers. It shows no sign of wear and looks the same as the day I bought it (minus the stickers). The stainless steel design makes cleaning simple, plus I don’t have to worry about chemicals leeching out if I use bleach to clean it.
Note: I’ve also got the 40 oz version and it works just as well as its big brother; it’s the ideal size for a soup for two people. So far I have only used it for transporting cold beverages, but come winter, I’m sure that I will take advantage of its insulating abilities and store soups in it as well. Hydro Flask bottles come in eight different sizes including two that are specifically designed for food, so finding the right size for your use shouldn’t be a problem.
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