The Soft Drinks Thread

  • Thread starter TexRex
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a baby, candy, it's like taking.
TexRex72
There. I did it.

What do you like? What don't you like? What are your drinking habits (or lack thereof)? Know any obscure brands? Is there anything that you miss because it's no longer available where you are? What else do you want to discuss about it?

I don't drink so much anymore because the sugars...aren't great...but Coca-Cola (not Diet) is definitely my preferred "brown syrup" cola. RC is also pretty decent, especially among the Pepsi-adjacent (at least I compare it most to Pepsi even if it isn't nearly so terrible). It's probably been a couple years since I had Coke proper, though I did steal a sip from one of those glass bottle, real cane sugar Mexican Cokes that my wife had last week.

(This is mostly a gag thread because candid cola chat occurs so frequently as off-topic in threads--I think I enjoy that most because it is natural and honest and it's often a nice break from topical discussion--but if good discussion can be had when cola is the topic, that's great too and I wouldn't have created the thread if I didn't think that was possible.)
 
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Manao (key lime) soda is the be all and end all of fizzy pop.
It’s beautiful poison on its own, and doubly seductive with a shot of rum in it.

Because of the monstrous business practices of Coke and Pepsi Co, I’ve strayed from their sugary offerings, hoping that Schweppes isn’t as bad.

Still, my name is Shem and I’m about 3 months since my last pop. In a moment of weakness I chose a pop over beer (I was driving) and my blood sugar gremlin has been warning me away ever since.

Can we get a vote on the soda vs. pop consensus? I feel like we’ve had one before, but I can’t place it.
 
The cola I drink the most is Safeway's store brand Zero-Calorie soda. It's cheap and pretty good. There's also a cherry cola variant.
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A drink I miss is 7-Up Gold. It was a cinnamon spice flavored lemon-lime drink that was only marketed between 1987-1989. It ran into some trouble in the market because, even though it was from 7-Up whose drinks were all clear, this was a brown-colored drink, making everyone think is was a cola instead of lemon-lime with extra flavoring. It's other big problem was that it had caffeine in it, which no 7-Up ever had before. Their marketing tag-line at the time was "Never had it. Never will." Referring to caffeine, of course. And yet here was a 7-Up with caffeine. It's a shame they didn't figure out how to market it, because I quite liked the cinnamon spice flavoring.
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Locally we have a company by the name of Orca Beverage. They specialize in retro flavored sodas of all kinds. Their sodas can be found in most grocery stores around here. I love the huge variety in flavors, but I can't drink them often since it's just too much sugar for me.
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Another local company is Jones Soda. They have plenty of great flavors, too. For several years in the late '90/early '00s, I worked at an office right across the street from Jones Soda. They had a cooler in their reception and the drinks were free. So every Friday I would walk across the street and get about a dozen sodas for everyone in our office.
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This thread reminded me of the "Capitol Hill Mystery Soda Machine", somewhat of an urban legend and I wouldn't be surprised if @Populuxe knows of it since it's in Seattle. From the 1990s until 2018, there was an unassuming soda vending machine in Capitol Hill, Seattle, which only had buttons that said "mystery". The machine would spit out a random soda, sometimes ordinary ones like Coca Cola or Mountain Dew, but at times extremely rare and foreign versions of them, sometimes variants that were defunct as long ago as the 1980s. No one knew who owned the machine (including the locksmith shop owner in which the soda machine was in front of), when it was stocked, or even where the rare, expensive, and defunct sodas came from. In June 2018, the machine disappeared without explanation, and never returned.

Soda machine yzbjth


 
This thread reminded me of the "Capitol Hill Mystery Soda Machine", somewhat of an urban legend and I wouldn't be surprised if @Populuxe knows of it since it's in Seattle. From the 1990s until 2018, there was an unassuming soda vending machine in Capitol Hill, Seattle, which only had buttons that said "mystery". The machine would spit out a random soda, sometimes ordinary ones like Coca Cola or Mountain Dew, but at times extremely rare and foreign versions of them, sometimes variants that were defunct as long ago as the 1980s. No one knew who owned the machine (including the locksmith shop owner in which the soda machine was in front of), when it was stocked, or even where the rare, expensive, and defunct sodas came from. In June 2018, the machine disappeared without explanation, and never returned.

Soda machine yzbjth



I do know about that one. Unfortunately I never did get a chance to try it before it disappeared.
 
I'm not a soft drink snob when it comes to Coke or Pepsi, I will drink either one. Whichever one is available I'll take. When I go to the grocery store usually one or the other has a buy 2 12pks got one 12pk free so whoever has that week's special I'll buy it. I drink one per week day with lunch.

With that being said if I had to choose between the two I prefer Pepsi over Coke. Pepsi doesn't have that harsh aftertaste that Coke gives me.

Now if I'm out on the road and pop into a gas station for fuel and a snack then I'll look to see if they have ginger ale. To buy a single drink to eat with chips or something on the road I'll get ginger ale if it's available.

For my morning snack at work I'll take a Dr Pepper mini. That keeps me from drinking too much and that way I wouldn't be pouring out the remainder of a full 12oz.

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I do like the taste of Dr Pepper but I rarely ever drink anything more than a mini.
 
Soft drinks are pretty much my life support at this point. Recently when my financies have been tight (not because of too much drinking, I'm not that fallen lmao), every time I had to wait for money to arrive, it was pretty hard knowing I couldn't just grab a drink at any time.

I like my Mountain Dew.

Not the one of the left, but the one on the right. Fortunately we get it regularly.
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I also fell in love with Frostbite when I took my first few sips. Now, keep in mind that I live in Finland, and that the flavor is a Walmart exclusive. I assume you can tell where this is going by now...

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I miss it.
 
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I lean toward Dr. Pepper when it comes to the mainstream brands. Sometimes I like Mountain Dew, but just once in a while. It depends on what's in the vending machine. If I'm at In-and-Out Burger, a 7up somehow just completes the meal...not sure why.

I'm not a huge fan of flavored carbonated water, but the Aha Mango Black tea which is gently caffeinated, is probably my favorite of the bunch. Not always as common in stores.

As for the localized stuff:

Was fortunate enough to be in Kentucky a few weeks ago and they have Ale-8-One, which just about perfect. Imagine a Mt. Dew that's slightly-less acidic, the crisp but very gentle aftertaste of a 7up, and a dash of ginger ale, and it hits the nail on the head. You pretty much have to go a specialty store to find it outside the state. I wasn't a huge fan of the new diet cherry, but it wasn't terrible either. Sometimes it's tough to improve on the original. (Apparently, they have a peach one now.)

Another favorite tiny brand is Blenheim Ginger Ale, and that's only common in South Carolina; even then, it's a guessing game where you can find it. But this stuff is strong (red cap)...you should sit down when trying it for the first time; it will clean out your nasal passages and go straight to your brain on the first swig! And there's a Not So Hot (gold cap) which is like a slightly-stronger Schweppes/Canada Dry, and the Diet (white cap) which I'm not fond of.

Locally, Buffalo Rock makes a ginger ale that's a pretty close copy, but maybe a little sweeter. If I'm in the Atlanta area, there's a Red Rock ginger ale that's very similar. They seem to be one of the last distributors that still distribute in those stubby 8oz glass bottles. It seems to be one of those "fallen flag" brands, they don't even have a website.

I wish they served these on the plane. All of the major airlines are Coke-dominated with little variety.
 
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One of my favorites is Diet Cranberry Canada Dry Ginger Ale. I really wish they made it in a size other than 2 liter bottle. It's a shame that neither of the other large ginger ale brands (Schweppes or Seagrams) make even a diet variant of flavored ginger ale.

One that I miss is trying Faygo soda. When I was in elementary school they started selling 12 oz. bottles locally but we are well outside the traditional location of the Midwest. I remember having the "Frosh" and Ginger Ale flavors for a good 2-3 years in the late 90s until maybe late 2000 before they stopped selling them here.
 
Coke Zero is the one for me.

For a treat, Virgil's cola is quite good. I'm pretty sure I've also posted about Ironbeer in the past. Orange soda also works depending on what you're doing.
 
Coke Zero is the one for me.

For a treat, Virgil's cola is quite good. I'm pretty sure I've also posted about Ironbeer in the past. Orange soda also works depending on what you're doing.
Or if you're Kel.
kenan kel GIF
 
Locally we have a company by the name of Orca Beverage. They specialize in retro flavored sodas of all kinds. Their sodas can be found in most grocery stores around here. I love the huge variety in flavors, but I can't drink them often since it's just too much sugar for me.
I tried one of Orca's root beer variety boxes from World Market when I was in the US last month. Good value for 10 bottles and other than Red Arrow being on the weak side I'd say it was a good selection. Their Americana is right up there with the best.
 
I've never tried any of the Zero sugar soft drinks. I don't think it would appeal to me. I also have never tried any of the blends like Cherry Coke, Vanilla Coke, etc. I really don't think I would like that. They now have a strawberry & cream Dr. Pepper, yuck.


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Mostly avoid drinking soda but I used to be a Mountain Dew addict, mostly like the blue voltage one. Still get one sometimes but nowadays if I get a soda I get a root beer, it's usually a A&W one cause my workplace has those in the vending machine.
 
@Populuxe I remember a specialty soda pop store in Lynnwood near a Lexus dealer about a decade ago, but maybe it's moved? They had all sorts of weird novelty stuff.

For one, they had those Lester Fixin's drinks (Bacon Soda and Buffalo Wing Soda) which never need to be tried again. :P But plenty of others that don't taste like varnish.

There's also a similar store near Oklahoma City on old Route 66, called Pop Shop or something. Wasn't expecting Japanese sodas but there you go. Ramune seems to have like 10 flavors.
 
@Pupik I live just south of Seattle so it’s been years since I’ve been up to Lynnwood, unfortunately. If I find myself up there, I’ll have a look near the Lexus dealer. I’ve tried Blenheim’s Ginger Ale. Fortunately I can find it in several stores around here. My favorite Ginger Ale ever is Wilkinson’s Ginger Ale in Japan. I’ve never had a ginger ale as good.
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@Jezza819 I am currently drinking a Zero Sugar Strawberry & Cream Dr. Pepper, and it’s delicious. Don’t dismiss Zero Sugar sodas if you’ve never tried them. My fridge currently has three different flavors of Zero Sugar Dr. Pepper in it: Strawberry & Cream, Cherry and regular. I also have Cream Soda Dr. Pepper, but its not Zero Sugar. My store didn’t have the Zero Sugar version, but they were having a “buy two, get two free” sale.

@Blitz24 A lot of the smaller independent grocery stores around here carry Faygo. I quite like them.

Probably the strangest flavor soft drink I’ve ever had is a curry flavored ramune I got at the Uwajimaya grocery store in Renton. It was actually quite good.
 
I'm not a big consumer of fizzy soft drinks, but i will favour A&W Root Beer if its available. It's not common in the UK, if sold at all its usually in the 'American confectionary' section of the world foods aisle in bigger supermarkets.
 
I completely forgot about the gallons of DrPepper I consumed in my teens. Easily one of my top 5 pops, if not my favourite.

It’s hard to find in my neck of the woods but mixing Amaretto and Coke delivers the same flavour with a hit of booze.
 
I'm not a big consumer of fizzy soft drinks, but i will favour A&W Root Beer if its available. It's not common in the UK, if sold at all its usually in the 'American confectionary' section of the world foods aisle in bigger supermarkets.
My local corner shop has a small selection of imported cans including A&W. I think Sainsbury's is the only major supermarket selling it in my area these days. They also sell the Soda Folk brand root beer which is the best I can find in the UK without buying online ever since they stopped selling imported bottles of Virgil's during the pandemic.
 
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I’ve never been fond of root beer. Or cream soda, come to think of it.

Is Lilt still a thing (totally tropical taste)?
 
I completely forgot about the gallons of DrPepper I consumed in my teens. Easily one of my top 5 pops, if not my favourite.

It’s hard to find in my neck of the woods but mixing Amaretto and Coke delivers the same flavour with a hit of booze.
Back in the day it was hard to beat an ice cold Dr Pepper in a glass bottle.
 
Back in the day it was hard to beat an ice cold Dr Pepper in a glass bottle.
For my brother’s 11th birthday sleepover, we told everyone to bring a cold pack of DPs in place of a traditional present.
I don’t know how I’m not diabetic already.

There’s something special about cold, glass bottle pop. I’m sure it’s been discussed at length in the Infield.

I’m taken back to my first year as an expat. Spicy chuan chuan Sunday dinner accompanied by glass bottle and straw Fanta’s, Cokes and Sprites at an outdoor restaurant in the baking summer heat.
Sometimes the pop game there was so good, we didn’t drink a beer all evening.
 
There’s something special about cold, glass bottle pop. I’m sure it’s been discussed at length in the Infield.
Back when I was in my late teens (early 1980's) we used to have to go over to a place in Mississippi to pick up vehicles. There was this little hole in the wall type gas station right close to the Alabama/Mississippi state line that had the coldest glass bottle Dr Peppers. They were so good. It was me and one other guy on the trip and we would always stop in there. It was just a little gas station with a vending machine inside.
 
Back when I was in my late teens (early 1980's) we used to have to go over to a place in Mississippi to pick up vehicles. There was this little hole in the wall type gas station right close to the Alabama/Mississippi state line that had the coldest glass bottle Dr Peppers. They were so good. It was me and one other guy on the trip and we would always stop in there. It was just a little gas station with a vending machine inside.

The little 8oz bottles of cane sugar Dr. Pepper were excellent, but I can't find them in the last few years. I'd only been able to find it in Texas.

It was similar to the "Dublin" Dr. Pepper, from what I've gathered (I never was able to try that), but they didn't bottle it.
 
The little 8oz bottles of cane sugar Dr. Pepper were excellent, but I can't find them in the last few years. I'd only been able to find it in Texas.

It was similar to the "Dublin" Dr. Pepper, from what I've gathered (I never was able to try that), but they didn't bottle it.
Amazon has a listing for 12oz bottles that for some reason I can't link here.
 
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Dr Pepper is my go to.
Pepsi next.
I really love ginger ale in a tall glass of ice, though I never think about picking one up when I’m out.
Used to be the cure for all sorts of ailments when I was a kid 🤣
 
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