However, in the interests of science and as a public service, we decided to taste test some Asian soda pop so you don't have to.
Through a process of random selection and mutual oneupsmanship, we selected six sodas. These were:
- Aloe Muscat Grape
- Basil Seed with Honey
- Winter Melon
- Grass Jelly
The Testing Protocol
The sodas were laid out on the table at Nuevo Rancho Lake. Soda crackers and filtered water were provided as palate cleansers, while an emergency spitting trajectory was agreed upon. We passed the camera around as we worked each in our turn to sacrifice ourselves on the altar of science.
Aloe Muscat Grape
This one mostly tasted like grape juice with the skins left in. The infusion of texture was a little odd to Western tastes, but the flavor was not unpleasant. danjite actually kept this around to drink more of later.
Tasted like grapefruit without the bite. In other words, pretty much like mangosteen. Also not unpleasant.
The Thai word for this fruit translates as "bitter gourd." The flavor of the drink was something else entirely. To quote khaybee, "This tastes kind of like dirt. Sweet, though."
Alarmingly opaque. It looked like old motor oil. It smelled like a stale puddle of rain in the drive way. It tasted like something the dentist puts in your mouth.
A deep, mellow brown, approximately the color of an entire keg party's worth of urine in a nonworking toilet. It had the piquant odor of reptile dung, and tasted like the world's worst iced tea.
Basil Seed with Honey
The undisputed horror of the tasting panel. This stuff poured out reluctantly, as if clinging to the birth-can. khaybee said it looked like little eyeballs. danjite and I thought it looked more like canned frog eggs. While the flavor was not actually all that objectionable — watered down honey with a stale grassy undertone — the texture was a violation of all that my mouth has ever held as sacred.
As usual, more at the Flickr set
Remember, here at this blog we live vicariously through ourselves. This has been a public service bulletin. The comments section is now open for your suggestions about this blog's next tasting panel, to spare you the agony.