Espressoda: Coffee + Soda = “Why did I put this in my mouth?!”

When we saw Espressoda in a store on the mainland, Khoa and I just had to buy it.  It sounds disgusting, but we couldn’t pass up another opportunity to drink such a random flavor combination.  Coffee and hazelnut sounds great. Coffee and chocolate, even better.  Even coffee and liquor is a pretty good pair (Bailey’s, anyone?).  But Coffee and soda?  That’s a flavor combo that makes you wonder what the makers were thinking.  And that’s exactly why we bought it. 

To tell you the truth, while we were on the mainland, we never got around to actually trying our new found beverage.  We took it back with us on the boat, promising each other that we’d try it when we got home.  A few weeks later and it was still kicking around in the fridge, cozying up to our half empty (or is it half full) bottle of sriracha sauce brought back from our trip to the US in February.  Today, we decided that it was time to see what Espressoda was all about.

As soon as you crack open the bottle, you’re hit with an intense scent of old, burnt coffee.  Not a good start.  I was hesitant to even take a sip of the bubbly concoction, but down the hatch it went.  I instantly regretted my spirit of adventure.  Not only did it taste exactly like it smelled (like old coffee), there was an awkward sweetness that was only amplified by the carbonation.  I don’t know how they did it, but Espressoda tastes even worse than it sounds.  I managed to take another sip, but that was all I could muster.  Khoa laughed at me as my face contorted into all sorts of disgusted poses.  He claims Espressoda would taste better if they put cream in it…I don’t think anything can save this monstrosity of a drink.  I read the Espressoda label and couldn’t help but smirk. “A twist of bold coffee and refreshing soda.”  Not quite.  Even now, as I write this post, the awful taste of day-old coffee still lingers on my tongue. 

The coffee-soda combo made me yearn for my beloved Za Supakuringu (The Sparkling), a carbonated green tea beverage that was only produced in the summer of 2010.  That limited time drink, unlike Espressoda, was awesome!

After a little internet research, I learned that Suntory, the popular beverage company who produces Espressoda, spent $72.5 million developing a special carbonation process to preserve the coffee flavor.  With that much research and cash being poured in to Espressoda, you would think they would have developed a tastier beverage.  But then again, how thirst quenching can a bottle of carbonated coffee be?

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