Taste testing some novelty sodas…

4 minute read

June 4, 2017, 2:30 PM

This past Thursday, Elyse and I finished up a round of taste tests on a bunch of novelty sodas that we bought at Rocket Fizz in Richmond back in March.  Recall from the second Journal entry about our Richmond trip:

The novelty sodas that I got in March

This was definitely a mixed bag as far as taste went.  We were admittedly a bit heavy on a single brand, as four of the six were from the Lester’s Fixins brand.  But we found out what worked and what didn’t, and were willing to be surprised by what we found.

The first soda that we tried was the one that started this whole thing in the first place: ranch dressing.  I had heard about the ranch dressing soda from someone that I follow on Instagram, and it seemed crazy enough to try.  I said this about it at the time:

"So Elyse and I tried the ranch dressing soda today. It smelled like feet, tasted like sugar and fizz in the moment, and left a ranchy aftertaste."

Realize that I basically had to force myself to drink that soda, because it was terrible.  Ranch dressing is lovely and all, but it doesn’t work as a soda.  Meanwhile, when I wrote that post, I had not yet had the complete experience, as I had not burped yet.  And the burp is as much of the soda experience as drinking it.  And it tasted exactly like it smelled: like feet.  All in all, as I’ve been known to say, “G-R-O-C-E gross”.

The following week, we broke out the bacon soda.  This was another Lester’s Fixins soda, and we were hoping that it would be better than the ranch dressing soda.  I had this to say about it at the time:

"So Lester's Fixins 'Bacon with Maple Syrup' soda tastes like bacon bits rather than real bacon."

All in all, the bacon soda was pretty good.  While it did taste like bacon bits, as in like what goes on salads, it was the higher end bacon bits, which are actually made of bacon.  Compare to something like that “Bac’n Pieces” brand, which is made out of something crunchy that was then treated with bacon flavoring.  All in all, I’d buy it again (the soda, not the artificial bacon bits).

Next, we tried the “Grass” soda:

Grass Soda

This was a non-Lester’s brand, and it wasn’t bad by any means.  We were told by the lady at the store that it tasted the way that you think that it should taste.  I expected something that vaguely resembled grass clippings, but surprisingly, it had a very subtle green apple flavor.  Quite a pleasant surprise, though I was a little disappointed that it didn’t taste like something resembling grass clippings.

The following week, we tried the Sweet Corn soda:

Sweet Corn soda

This was probably the best Lester’s Fixins soda out of the whole bunch.  It was the color that you would expect a corn soda to have.  It smelled like corn.  And then when we drank it, it tasted more or less like creamed corn.  In other words, they nailed it.

The following week, we gave the butter soda a spin:

Butter Soda

This is where you recognize that Lester’s Fixins doesn’t always hit it out of the park.  Ranch dressing soda was basically what it said on the label (and was pretty nasty), and the bacon bits hit pretty close as well.  Then the corn was perfection.  But this one was a miss.  Butter isn’t that strong of a flavor in the first place, and in soda, it quickly gets overwhelmed by other flavors.  In this case, the sugar took care of that.  Thus butter soda tasted like sugar water, and nothing more, because the sugar completely overrode the butter taste.  That was a disappointment, because I was looking forward to butter in soda form, and its placement near the end of the line was indicative of our high hopes for this soda.

And last but not least, San Francisco Fog soda:

San Francisco Fog Soda

This soda had a great presentation.  The label gave an impression of a foggy day on the San Francisco Bay, and the soda itself was a grayish white color to match.  The lady at the store told us that it had something of a marshmallow flavor to it, and that was a pretty accurate description of it.  While the name stirs up romantic imagery of San Francisco, the marshmallow soda that Elyse and I consumed was remarkably good.  It all came together quite nicely.

Meanwhile, Elyse and I picked up six more sodas from Rocket Fizz while we were passing through Richmond on our way back from a trip to the Outer Banks (more on that in a future Life and Times set [update: here it is]).  Check these out:

The second round of sodas

The next round of novelty sodas: “Martian”, chocolate, “barf”, Mighty Mouse blue cream, pickle juice, and maple syrup.  Note only one Lester’s Fixins soda this time around, as we went to great effort to select sodas from different manufacturers this time around.  I’ve had a chocolate soda before, but it was cheap stuff that tasted like seltzer water and chocolate, alternating between the two flavors.  I’ve never had a really quality chocolate soda before.  So this ought to be fun.

Categories: Food and drink, Richmond