Cane Sugar (605 reviews)

Towne Club Strawberry Melon

Towne Club Strawberry Melon

Part of me wants to trash this for being glorified carbonated sugar water and part of me wants to praise it for being a smallish local company (Detroit) that is still putting out soda in glass bottles that is sweetened with cane sugar. The thing is that this is neither terrible nor great. It simply falls in the grey area of life. Towne Club gets some points for making a strawberry melon soda, but the execution could be better. It tastes so sweet that it makes it hard to decipher the different fruit flavors. I was certainly not able to drink even half of this bottle. Saying I drank a third of it is being generous. I’m sure there is someone out there who loves this and swears by it. I can only assume that same person devours Pixie Stix and Sweet Tarts all day long. They also most definitely live in Michigan. No one outside the mitten can have that much love for this soda.

Website
http://www.cdry.net/towne_club.html
Country
United States
Sweetener
Cane Sugar
Categories
Soda Pop
Rating
3/5
Reviewed By
Jason Draper on September 28th, 2016
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Ginger People Bottoms Up Ginger Beer

Ginger People Bottoms Up Ginger Beer

My brother finds drinks sometimes and thinks he's going to be mean and buy me stuff he thinks might be gross. This isn't the gross one but is part of the group that he bought me. This one was actually really nice. It was sweet and really spicy, the way that ginger beer should be. It most certainly still had its feet in ginger ale territory but was dabbling in the ginger beer world. The spice was nice and it burns in all the right places. The fact that it was unfiltered means that it was laden with stuff at the bottom and you know how the Thirsty Dudes love stuff in their drinks. A+. Would drink again.

Website
http://www.gingerpeople.com/
Country
United States
Sweetener
Cane Sugar
Categories
Ginger, Soda Pop
Rating
4/5
Reviewed By
Mike Literman on September 26th, 2016
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Stok Cold Brew Iced Coffee Black

Stok Cold Brew Iced Coffee Black

Oh how I wish I had one of these now. No, not a 48 ounce bottle as that would be suicidal but the smaller, equally available 10 ounce bottle. Long nights, friends. Long nights. I know it would make me sick and dizzy but anything over this underslept feeling, which is garbage. I took a shot or two of this over the weekend, you know, just to get by, and it was nice. It was smooth, and although advertised as "not too sweet" it was definitely sweetened and possibly more than many people would like.

I don't have a preference as far as coffee goes, as you may well know, but sweet and usually with some sort of syrup is preferable. This met the criteria just fine. Lucky for me, there is a 48 ounce bottle with two shots missing at home waiting, for a girl like me (to come into my life).

Website
http://stokcoffee.com/
Country
United States
Sweetener
Cane Sugar
Categories
Coffee
Rating
4/5
Reviewed By
Mike Literman on September 26th, 2016
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Americana Huckleberry

Americana Huckleberry

By naming their company Americana are they insinuation that that their products are artifacts of American history? Are these sodas a glimpse into our nation’s past? If so, we’ve had one hell of a history of soda, because this is ridiculously delicious. Fruit sodas are a tough sell for me. They rarely turn out correctly and mostly taste like sugar water that is flavored nothing like fruit at all. This tastes distinctively like berries and I’m not talking about those of the straw-, rasp- or even blue- varieties. This is pure huckleberry, or so I’ll assume as I don’t think I’ve ever had the fruit in its natural form. It doesn’t taste artificial at all, but rather like someone carbonated juice and added a bit of cane sugar. Sure it’s fairly sweet, but some sodas call for that. If only America still tasted like this instead of like racism and hate I wouldn’t feel so disgusting all the time. Okay I would still feel gross from consuming too much, but I wouldn’t feel as bad.

Website
http://orcabeverage.com
Country
United States
Sweetener
Cane Sugar
Categories
Soda Pop
Rating
4/5
Reviewed By
Jason Draper on September 22nd, 2016
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Bickford's Traditional Soda Sarsaparilla

Bickford's Traditional Soda Sarsaparilla

I knew I was in for a wild ride when I didn’t even have this cap completely off and I was blasted in the face by the familiar sent of anise/licorice. How is it that I hate black licorice/black jelly beans more than I have hated almost anything in this world, yet I kind of dig that flavor when it’s in beverage form? Sure this tastes a bit like carbonated Nyquil, but it’s still somehow pretty great.

There really isn’t anything about this that would make me think sarsaparilla if I blind taste tested it. I would just assume it was supposed to be an anise soda, because that’s all I’m getting. Perhaps sarsaparilla is something different in Australia, where this drink comes from.

This bottle is only 9.3oz, but I think it would be perfect at half that size. I really enjoy it, but it gets to be a bit too much for me at about the half way point. I really hope I stumble across this companies other flavors though, because I anticipate great things from them.

Website
http://bickfordssoda.com.au/
Country
Australia
Sweetener
Cane Sugar
Categories
Root Beer, Soda Pop
Rating
4/5
Reviewed By
Jason Draper on September 21st, 2016
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Fiz "1922" Ginger Ale

Fiz "1922" Ginger Ale

What exactly does the year 1922 have to do with ginger ale? A quick google search came up with nothing but a couple of ads that came out that year. Wikipedia tells me that ginger ale existed in a marketable form for decades before that. Perhaps, since this is a sugary beverage, they chose 1922 to celebrate the first successful insulin treatment of diabetes. Okay I dug deeper and it turns out that 1922 was the year that College Club Beverages (the company that makes Fiz) opened its soda streams. That makes more sense. Since I couldn’t find any info, I’m guessing that ginger ale was one of, if not the first flavor they produced.

This is a nice little soda. It’s sweet, but not in the “this is 99% sugar water and 1% flavor” way. It tastes like a fairly standard modern ginger ale. You don’t actually taste the earthiness of the root, or the spice, but there is no mistaking that it’s ginger ale.

Website
http://www.facebook.com/COLLEGE.CLUB.BEVERAGES/
Country
United States
Sweetener
Cane Sugar
Categories
Ginger, Soda Pop
Rating
3/5
Reviewed By
Jason Draper on September 7th, 2016
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Towne Club "Honolulu Blue" Cream Soda

Towne Club "Honolulu Blue" Cream Soda

Towne Club started selling soda in the 60’s and it was the prime rival to Faygo, decades before it was coopted by the clowns. I did not know that, but Wikipedia just informed me and I always have more respect for such long running companies. Sure, the company has changed hands throughout the years, but it’s still bottled in burnt out Detroit. Do people in Detroit get upset when people talk about how their city is falling apart? I’ve been there many times and it is certainly one of, if not the most, run down cities I have ever been too, and I travel to a lot of garbage places. Oh well, I hope they have pride in their city. The crappiness of Buffalo is what made me love it and I kind of hate that it’s starting to become nice, because it’s taking away the things I loved about the city. Maybe the denizens of Detroit feel the same way. They can live cheaply, so they can do what they want with their lives and not be tethered to a job struggling to make rent. It could also just be a terrifying place to live. I have no idea.

I will say they have some decent local sodas. As an adult it would be very rare that I would reach for one of these, but in my younger years when I craved all the sugar I could get, I would have loved it. It’s slightly fruity cream soda that reminds me of the pink Crush cream soda (soda mousse) in Canada. I loved that as a teenager, so logic follows that I would have loved this as well. This is mostly sugar flavored, but there is enough of a “cream soda” taste that shines through to make it interesting. It’s nothing mind blowing, but it’s a local soda made with cane sugar with a wide variety of flavors in a classic looking bottle. I can get behind those things.

Website
http://www.cdry.net/towne_club.html
Country
United States
Sweetener
Cane Sugar
Categories
Soda Pop
Rating
3/5
Reviewed By
Jason Draper on September 2nd, 2016
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Private Selection Huckleberry Hibiscus Cream Soda

Private Selection Huckleberry Hibiscus Cream Soda

I love grocery stores. I don’t really know why, but when I’m traveling I love stopping in at local stores and different chains. Even when I don’t need anything I just like wandering around in them. I live in the land of Wegmans, so it’s hard to beat what I have at home, but I still enjoy the differences of other stores. I’ve always been a fan of Kroger. Their stores look pretty standard, but they generally carry some different and decent stuff, especially for vegetarians. I recently was told about their new Private Selection line and I couldn’t wait until I was back in their territory to check it out. It is their fancy store brand stuff. They call it artisanal. I call it delicious, well at least this soda.

Some other things that I greatly enjoy besides supermarkets are huckleberry and hibiscus. I used to be a big fiend for cream soda in high school as well, even though I don’t drink it too much these days. Actually I guess I drink the adult version of it every day in the way of drinking Polar’s vanilla seltzer. This soda took three things I am a fan of and mixed them together into something that is greater as a whole. Real fruit juice is used and the cream soda doesn’t taste even remotely cheap. The huckleberry and hibiscus mix together nicely leaving only the faintest tinges of floral. This all interacts with the vanilla in a way that couldn’t be better.

The fact that this is as good as it is and is a store brand is kind of a game changer. Sure, it does have a higher price (I think it was $5 for a 4-pack), but it’s on the cheap side of the quality that you receive. I do warn you that once you try this there is a chance you will never look at another cream soda the same way again.

Website
http://www.privateselection.com/
Country
United States
Sweetener
Cane Sugar
Categories
Soda Pop
Rating
4/5
Reviewed By
Jason Draper on August 30th, 2016
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Cheers Root Beer

Cheers Root Beer

I travel a lot. Be it touring with bands, or just for leisure I like to leave Buffalo a lot. I love it here, but I appreciate it more when I’m able to take a break and then come back to it. When I’m out in the world I don’t often do touristy things. I prefer to go on adventures and find the weird, cool things cities have to offer. Recently I was in Boston for the probably two dozenth time in my life and my friends who I was with really wanted to check out Cheers. They love the show and it we had some time to kill, so we walked across some park or another and checked it out. I must admit it was pretty neat to stop in for a few minutes. I really had no interest in eating there, or having a drink because…yeah I’m not a fan of bars. The television nostalgia was nice though. They each picked up some souvenirs and I grabbed this bottle of root beer.

Being a novelty item I had low expectations for this soda and it ended up sitting in my fridge for a while. Obviously they went to some bottling plant and just had them slap a Cheers label on it. Normally in those situations the soda is completely uninspiring and more sugar water than anything. This was more robust than I had expected. It was better than store brand, which is the barometer that I use for root beer quality. It’s a little dark, and fairly sweet. It did its job and I found it quite refreshing on this hot, anxiety ridden day. And no, I do not want to go where everybody knows my name. I want to hide out in the woods where I will come in contact with very few people. At what point do I need to admit that I have a problem? Oh, probably when I run out of drinks to review.

Country
United States
Sweetener
Cane Sugar
Categories
Root Beer, Soda Pop
Rating
4/5
Reviewed By
Jason Draper on August 2nd, 2016
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Jelly Belly Gourmet Soda Juicy Pear

Jelly Belly Gourmet Soda Juicy Pear

No matter how many flavors of Jelly Belly soda I try I am continuously surprised at how they don’t taste like carbonated garbage water. Confectionary companies making soda has rarely, if ever, turned out well until now. So here I am with a bottle of soda that I don’t really enjoy, but I can’t say that it’s bad by any means. I just am not a big fan of pears. They are at the lower levels of the fruit chain for me. I mean they come nowhere near the atrocity that is bananas, but they are still not even close to my favorite. Let me take an aside here and ask if we can hold whoever it was that created bananas responsible for war crimes? I think they would be getting off light.

Back to the subject at hand; this tastes like someone took a pear at the peak of ripeness, juiced it and mixed it in with some sweetened sparkling water. It only tastes vaguely candied, and that is shocking. I can’t believe how much it actually tastes like pears since it says there is 0% juice in here.

I may not be a fan of this, but I can certainly respect it. I also know a bunch of people who would love this. It’s a shame they aren’t here to drink the rest of it, because I more than likely will not.

Website
http://www.jellybelly.com/
Country
United States
Sweetener
Cane Sugar
Categories
Soda Pop
Rating
4/5
Reviewed By
Jason Draper on August 1st, 2016
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