The Lava Lamp of Beverage Accessories

by Justin D'Olier on February 24, 2011 | Comments Off on The Lava Lamp of Beverage Accessories |

On Super Bowl Sunday, the Lead Cork Dork and the Spirits Gypsy brought over their new iSi Soda Siphon, a gas injection device that carbonates anything. We decided to take liberties with the anything.

You see, a soda making kit is similar to a breathalyzer: a seemingly innocuous and helpful device if used for its intended purpose, that is almost never used for its intended purpose. During the month and a half I’ve owned a breathalyzer, I have never used it to test my blood alcohol level before driving. I don’t need to. I just don’t drink and drive. I have, however, used it on two separate occasions to play the addictively fun game “Who can blow a higher BAC?”, leading to several frightening revelations (e.g. I can drink far more than I consider safe or prudent and still be under the legal limit, information I’d rather not know) and two sizable hangovers.

Sparkling Long Island Iced Tea

You know what a 12 ounce cup of gin, vodka, tequila, and rum needs? Increased drinkability.

Naturally, our first idea for a test run of the soda siphon was not organic fizzy lemon cooladas. We decided to make sparkling long island iced-teas. Because you know what a 12 ounce cup of gin, vodka, tequila, and rum needs? Increased drinkability.

Sadly, the results were a bit of mixed bag. The resulting bubbles added a nice texture and a refreshing quality to the long islands, but not significantly more so than simply adding a splash of soda water. We did a second test run on red wine – the natural successor to sparkling long islands – with a similar outcome. The bubbles provided a unique twist to the beverage, but didn’t significantly alter the drinking experience.

My biggest gripe was the small size of the bubbles. The soda maker produced only a limited number of very small bubbles, like a Perrier left open on the counter for a half a day. Perhaps a higher end model or a different brand of soda maker would provide additional oomph to the resulting sparkling beverage (though lack of sufficient carbonation is the most frequent complaint about soda makers I encountered in my subsequent 45 exploration of the seedy underbelly of online soda makers on Amazon).

All in all, the iSi Soda Siphone made for a fun night and a very interesting experiment, but nothing that would make me consider the it anything other than a kitschy novelty item, the lava lamp of beverage accessories.

[Editor’s Note: Lead Cork Dork, Elton Nichols wanted to share the following thoughts on the iSi Soda Siphon to provide a broader perspective:

The sparkling water it makes from tap water tastes as good as Pellegrino for a lot less, so there’s your counterbalancing positive spin if you care for it.

P.S. I think the sparkling L.I.I.T. was the least impressive thing to come out of that device FWIW.]

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