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Old 12-30-2014, 11:43 AM   #15
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I bought the Soda Stream. Mostly for carbonated water. Many of their syrup packs contain a mix of corn syrup and an artificial sweetener. They do have a few that are corn syrup only and several that are artificial sweetener only. Compared to the 5 gal SS Cornelius kegs used by the home brewers and carbonated with a 20 lb cylinder of CO2 Soda Stream is far too expensive. Soda Stream is convenient, and if I was a full timer it might find a place in the rig.
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Old 12-30-2014, 12:08 PM   #16
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m.hony: RC = Royal Crown Cola
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I went back after posting to edit and it was too late. Obviously knows RC when you see one. Coke, RC, Pepsi and then "other brands" is my order of preferences. There was another edit... but will leave that to the stickler's to details.

My wife lives on the morning cup of dark, dense coffee. I use to add cream and sugar... my mother from the Netherlands had tiny cups when coffee was a rare and expensive find, during and after WW2. Added cream and sugar. If it were carbonated... it would be among the Soda family. My wife converted me to coffee sans... anything other than coffee bean and water. Never was tempted to go back to that sweet creamy coffee again. Another topic?

The USA went to corn syrup probably to appease the corn growers. Cane Sugar tastes better. Someone might know the whole story, but it has to be the Federal Government wanting to save or promote something. Costco... here I go again... does offer bottled Coca Cola in bottles from Mexico. They have it right. Cane Sugar is used in their syrup.

Much like wine and beer tasters... we call them "bar brawlers" in Cowboy Country... but in California the terminology is a bit more softened. Some Cola Tasters can easily distinguish between the Cola Family sans Cocaine, that was the medicinal value of the early Colas. Pepsi was the sweetest... and when you ask for a Coke at some restaurants... they include Pepsi as a Coke without flinching. You would get pure syrup as a cough relief and whatever trumped up value they gave to the syrups at the time.

Soft drink companies are very competitive. You will discover one town as ONLY Pepsi or ONLY Coke... the company will offer the fountain, cups and other inducements to "sign up". Sometimes you will see a fountain that was one brand... dispensing the OTHER. Missouri... Pepsi Country. Colorado... mostly Coke. Some chains will carry nationally the Cola with the best deal.

A sales representative for a Soda Company could swing a deal that is too good to be true and out goes the other Brand in short order. Just the way it works in this business.

The Soda Fountain. The Soda Jerk, which was actually a high status position for a youth, before the Soda Fountain... would squirt the Syrup into the glass and then add the Soda water. A cute gal could smile and induce the SJ to add... just a bit more... please? Even a Sas Fras Flip could be "adjusted" for friends across the counter when the boss was not watching closely. (Root Beer Float)

I have Soda's pretty much only when traveling. Be aware of this one trade secret. In the Summer do not over do the ice. The soda water in the fountain is cooled as cold as possible to retain the CO2 fizz... so it is already cold. A 44 ounce cup, half full of ice, can replace 35% of the liquid. Sometimes you want the ice... other times you are just thirsty. I ask for "no ice" at a restaurant. It will be cold. Some add ice to wine or beer to cool it... Ice is Profit. Once you figure that out... you will be among the small minority that knows next time... "Coke/Pepsi/RC without Ice" is the gold standard. The finer the ice, the more liquid that is displaced... You are going to force some of these places into ruin knowing all of this.

For those European Air Forum followers. Order a Coke in Europe without ice... they will not fill the small glass, but will leave a half inch or more... short. And... NO REFILLS. Applebee's restaurants in the Netherlands offer ONE FREE REFILL. I was at an Applebee's in Littleton, Colorado and said if they gave me a free desert I would tell then about the Applebee's in the Netherlands. Ding...ding...ding, Free Desert. Pretty much the same there as in North America.

The End.
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Old 12-30-2014, 02:07 PM   #17
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Just think of all that snow you're shoveling as PROFIT. It might make the job go easier
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Old 12-30-2014, 02:45 PM   #18
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The new 'Sodastream' product.. now, that's an idea... use your own water, buy the little syrup bottles... has anyone tried that?
I carry several flavors of SodaStream in the trailer. I don't bother with carbonation. I simply sip a little space out of a new bottle of water to make room for the syrup and pour in some SodaStream. I prefer it without the carbonation. I do the same at home with a little ice.
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Old 12-30-2014, 02:52 PM   #19
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I have to make do with bottles of homebrew beer!

I have thought about taking along a keg and a 5 pound CO2 cylinder to dispense it, but it would be a problem to keep it cool unless I build what they call a "jockey box" that cools the beer leaving the keg by passing it first through a copper coil immersed in ice water in a picnic cooler.

Seems like too much trouble - and besides, once I run out of the bottles I have brought with us, it gives me a good excuse to sample all the local craft beers wherever we may find ourselves.

I usually have to do that in a brew pub so that we can eat there as well and that keeps my better half happy about the idea!

Brian.
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Old 12-30-2014, 03:11 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by Ray Eklund View Post
The USA went to corn syrup probably to appease the corn growers. Cane Sugar tastes better. Someone might know the whole story, but it has to be the Federal Government wanting to save or promote something. Costco... here I go again... does offer bottled Coca Cola in bottles from Mexico. They have it right. Cane Sugar is used in their syrup.
(My momma thought Walter Cronkite was sexy... that's where I picked up all these sniglets of information.)

It was probably because of Fidel Castro. Cuba was and still is a major producer of cane sugar, and the USA was it's major customer... when Fidel came to power and we put in the embargo, one of the ideas behind it was to destroy the Cuban economy, which was supposed to get Castro back out. I barely remember his predecessor, Trujillo, I think. Corrupt. Havana was wall to wall casinos and gambling and made OLD Las Vegas look like a kindergarten. Everyone from Capone to JFK hung out there for vacation.

Cuba of course survived, the Soviet bloc got the sugar and it's biproduct, gin, and of course there was also a very robust market for Cuban cigars around the world. (And according to a number of Navy sailors, a lively black market for US dollars traded for Cohibas through the chain link fence surrounding Guantanamo Bay. Isn't it odd how we embargoed the country but kept the base?)

I am rather surprised that more sugar cane isn't grown in the USA, especially in Louisiana and Florida. Anyway with methanol becoming more commonly used, perhaps high fructose corn syrup won't be as available and once sugar starts coming in cheaply from Cuba, who knows?

Paula
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Old 12-30-2014, 03:20 PM   #21
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Cuba of course survived, the Soviet bloc got the sugar and it's biproduct, gin
Rum. Gin is from juniper berries, not from sugar cane.

What can I say? Nitpicking is my specialty…
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Old 12-30-2014, 03:52 PM   #22
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BEER is a SODA product...

Beer... is within the Soda Family. ALSO natural CO2 from yeast fermentation of sugars to alcohol must be healthier from a sugar aspect and is providing food to hops and grains in the fields.

Home Brew is in the "Soda Refill" category when you have a capper and reuse bottles. I have a neighbor who I supply empty glass bottles and he supplies full glass bottles if I help. Many of these home brew recipes are excellent. If one batch turns out border line... you have to drink it to save the World. Looking at it this way makes it all worth the work and effort! A sack full of empties left here last night. It is good to be a good neighbor.
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Old 12-30-2014, 05:14 PM   #23
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Beer... is within the Soda Family. ALSO natural CO2 from yeast fermentation of sugars to alcohol must be healthier from a sugar aspect and is providing food to hops and grains in the fields.

Home Brew is in the "Soda Refill" category when you have a capper and reuse bottles. I have a neighbor who I supply empty glass bottles and he supplies full glass bottles if I help. Many of these home brew recipes are excellent. If one batch turns out border line... you have to drink it to save the World. Looking at it this way makes it all worth the work and effort! A sack full of empties left here last night. It is good to be a good neighbor.
Interesting!

I have to admit though that I don't natural carbonate my homebrew but rather I force carbonate it from CO2 cylinders - not sure it makes any difference really as CO2 is CO2. I find however that when I have tried naturally carbonating beer I don't care for the slight yeasty taste that comes from the secondary fermentation needed to achieve carbonation that way.

As well, I generally don't use bottles but rather have couple of kegs of different brews on tap at any given time, usually an IPA and a porter. I bottle some (from the kegs) only if taking some to someone's home or going on a trip with the RV.

An enjoyable hobby!

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Old 12-30-2014, 05:22 PM   #24
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Rum. Gin is from juniper berries, not from sugar cane.

What can I say? Nitpicking is my specialty…
I'm no expert on home distilling, after all, it is illegal in North America
isn't it? (wink, wink, - amazing how many places sell the equipment on line!)
but I believe you still start with yeast and a "sugar wash" to ferment and create the alcoholic drink - which s then distilled to increase the potency.

I think that juniper berries - along with other herbs & spices such as coriander,
licorice, angelica etc - all called "botanicals" are added to provide the distinctive flavour.

G&T's are about the only "hard liquor" drinks that I enjoy - never could develop a taste for whiskey!

Brian.
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Old 12-30-2014, 05:49 PM   #25
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I'm no expert on home distilling, after all, it is illegal in North America
isn't it? (wink, wink, - amazing how many places sell the equipment on line!)
but I believe you still start with yeast and a "sugar wash" to ferment and create the alcoholic drink - which s then distilled to increase the potency.
I'm no expert, either, but certain drinks are traditionally made from the fermented mash of certain plants:
Rum - sugar cane
Gin - juniper berries
Sloe Gin - sloeberries
Vodka - potatoes
Bourbon - corn (and other grains, but at least 51% corn)
Irish whiskey - barley & maize
Single malt Scotch - barley only
Rye - Must have at least 51% rye in the US, but only 10% rye in Canada (yet Alberta Springs in Canada is the only maker using 100% rye, go figure)
Except for rum, none of these drinks require sugar to make them; they use the natural carbohydrates in the grain to feed yeast and make sugar. The mash is made from warm water and sprouted grain. Adding sugar instead of using sprouted grain is a shortcut and the mark of an amateur or someone in a hurry and will affect the taste of the final product.
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Old 12-30-2014, 08:05 PM   #26
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I'm no expert, either, but certain drinks are traditionally made from the fermented mash of certain plants:
Rum - sugar cane
Gin - juniper berries
Sloe Gin - sloeberries
Vodka - potatoes
Bourbon - corn (and other grains, but at least 51% corn)
Irish whiskey - barley & maize
Single malt Scotch - barley only
Rye - Must have at least 51% rye in the US, but only 10% rye in Canada (yet Alberta Springs in Canada is the only maker using 100% rye, go figure)
Except for rum, none of these drinks require sugar to make them; they use the natural carbohydrates in the grain to feed yeast and make sugar. The mash is made from warm water and sprouted grain. Adding sugar instead of using sprouted grain is a shortcut and the mark of an amateur or someone in a hurry and will affect the taste of the final product.

Hi Protag !

Well, I think we are "close" to saying the same thing!

But I still am not convinced that juniper berries are "mashed" to create the alcohol in gin.

"Mashing" is the process of soaking starch-containing products such as grain in hot water within a specific temperature range and time to convert starches (in the presence of certain enzymes) into a sugary liquid which can then be fermented.

This is true for beer, whiskey, vodka, and (I think,) for gin

My belief was that gin production starts by mashing GRAIN (rather than juniper berries) to produce the necessary sugars for fermentaton, and that juniper berries and other botanicals are added later in the process simply to give the gin its characteristic flavour.

If you have delved into this subject and know me to be wrong, then I humbly concede in advance!

I will owe you a Tanqueray and tonic or three should we meet up sometime around the campfire! (I hope to be in Florida for seven weeks starting mid Feb!)

Cheers ........ Brian.

PS - Apologies to the OP for going on a bit of a tangent from "Soda!"
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Old 12-30-2014, 08:36 PM   #27
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IF you like to make your own and use a soda stream, there are a whole host of DIY recipes for making soda flavorings. Just google 'homemade soda syrup' or google your favorite brand here is mine

4 Ways to Make Dr. Pepper - wikiHow

I love the soda stream as you can use if for mixing alcohol drinks and non alcohol
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Old 12-30-2014, 10:08 PM   #28
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My belief was that gin production starts by mashing GRAIN (rather than juniper berries) to produce the necessary sugars for fermentaton, and that juniper berries and other botanicals are added later in the process simply to give the gin its characteristic flavour.
Yes, you are correct. Making gin is very similar to flavoring vodka. You start with neutral (unflavored) ethyl alcohol from any grain. Since no specific type of grain is required, juniper berries are the only distinctive ingredient in gin.

By the way, Tanqueray is the only gin that does not contain a perfume to enhance the aroma, making it a "purer" gin than any other brand. The things you learn when one's dad owned a liquor store (among his many post-retirement self-employed businesses)…
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