Caffeine. When reflecting on their hyperpaced careers, it was a subject brothers-in-law Chris Lai and Danny Huang found themselves discussing. The Angelenos’ daily intakes mirrored one another: a large coffee in the morning, a high-sugar energy drink mid-morning, soda at lunch, and vodka mixed with another energy drink at night. Upon examination, they realized their morning coffee alone contained 400mg of caffeine, almost exceeding the FDA’s recommended daily allotment. It hit them—their caffeine routines were unsustainable. For the sake of their careers, family, and health, they decided to create a solution: Marquis, a tri-blend caffeine drink.
The Road to Marquis
Huang and Lai began their deep dive into caffeine alternatives back in 2013. At the time, Huang, a father of four, was working overseas with the Ed Hardy fashion brand. Lai, then a newlywed, was investing long hours in the finance industry. Both had been depending on caffeine to get through demanding schedules.
Realizing the impact caffeine was having on their well-being, they went in search of a healthier option, one with low to moderate caffeine and healthy ingredients. Their quest saw them hitting wall after wall. If a drink had a great taste, the ingredients were unhealthy. If the ingredients were healthy, the taste was less than satisfying.
Market brands made substantial claims about being healthy energy alternatives, but ingredient lists and nutritional facts proved otherwise. The main culprit in most beverage brands was sucralose, an artificial sweetener known for having a harmful impact on gut biome. Huang and Lai questioned: how had a marketable solution not been found? Determined to make a difference in the energy drink space, in 2013, Huang and Lai founded Marquis.
Caffeine, and its source, were their primary focus when creating Marquis beverages. They loved coffee, but hated the way it made them feel. Tea was never strong enough. Energy drinks tasted great, but lacked the natural ingredients for which they were searching. A solution became clear: take what they liked from each drink and combine them.
Research revealed that smaller amounts of caffeine consumed throughout the day was more effective and sustainable than drinking a large amount first thing in the morning. With this in mind, Marquis was formulated from three different types of caffeine–yerba mate, green coffee (the unroasted coffee bean), and green tea. The trifecta adds up to a mere 100mg of caffeine, the equivalent of the standard cup of coffee.
Marquis beverages contain no sugar, no calories, and no net carbs. Instead, it’s packed with 100% of recommended daily vitamins, four different antioxidants, and more vitamin C than an orange. An organic, moderately caffeinated drink, Marquis can be consumed any time of day. It’s an ideal alternative to a second cup of coffee, a replacement for a lunchtime soda, and a cocktail mixer.
Marquis’ recent success in luxury retailer, Erewhon, and 60 Target locations throughout California has sent the brand to new heights. Next? The release of their newest flavor, Pineapple Passion, AKA vacation in a can, which appeals to the brand’s laidback California roots.
Bringing the flavor and campaign to life is the very community that inspired Huang and Lai when first launching Marquis—Angelenos. Under Marquis Director of Marketing Zach Volpo, a group of dynamic LA photographers, videographers, directors, and stylists went to work re-inventing what it means to create content for the beverage industry.
An ongoing mission of Marquis’ founders is to educate consumers about caffeine. Their hope: that the knowledge they’ve gained will empower others to make the best beverage choices for themselves.
Follow the Marquis journey on Instagram and TikTok at @drinkmarquis. Try their fruit-forward flavors for yourself at Erewhon, select Targets, Amazon, or on their website www.drinkmarquis.com