I’m a pretty adventurous guy when it comes to food. I’ll try pretty much anything. I’m not talking “Fear Factor” adventurous, but I’ll try anything reasonable at least once. It was this willingness that lead me to try Pulpo a la Gallega, Escargot, and my most recent finding, Wasabi Funyuns. They’re just like funyuns, only they taste good. The last time I got into trouble eating something new was the time I tried those nasty Harry Potter Jelly Beans (oh that I hadn’t tried the Sardine Jelly Beans!). That was until a co-worker brought in the Jones Soda Holiday Gift Pack. That’s when curiosity almost made the cat throw up.
If you didn’t already know, Jones Soda makes quirky soda flavors and bottles them with even quirkier labels. They also have a tradition of selling “holiday” flavored sodas around the Thanksgiving/Christmas season. We’d been joking about them at work and someone decided to buy the five-pack. On Friday we decided it was time crack them open and give them a try. Big mistake.
We ordered the taste testing how we thought they would taste, from the most tolerable to the most heinous. We started with the Cranberry Sauce. It was not the harbinger of doom that it should have been. It had a mildly tart cranberry taste with a bad aftertaste. Compared to what was to come, it was nectar of the Gods.
Up next was Pumpkin Pie. I had high hopes for this flavor but those hopes were dashed upon opening the bottle. Its smell was unappealing but I soldiered on. A little swig was all it took. This flavor should have been named Burnt Caramel with an overpowering hint of Nutmeg. Bleh! Such potential wasted. So we put that away and gave the Turkey and Gravy a try. One would think a turkey flavored soda would be horrible, but it was surprisingly not disgusting. It wasn’t good by any stretch, but it didn’t kill me, either. It tasted like a rather flat, stale orange soda. It certainly wasn’t as horrible as that pumpkin pie. I still shudder at recalling that flavor.
The next on the list was the Wild Herb Stuffing Soda. This is where things got ugly. This flavor didn’t past the smell test but the taste test was almost the death of me. Heck, it didn’t even pass the “look at the bottle test”. It looked like dirty rain run-off. It wasn’t going to be good. Imagine, if you will, straining chicken broth through a dirty gym sock. Gross, right? Then imagine straining that liquid through a gauze patch that had been covering a festering blister for a week. Still with me? Okay, now take whatever horrible taste you’ve imagined and raise it to the tenth power. It was worse than that. As soon as that drink of death touched my tongue I immediately gagged. Horrible. It took all I had in me not to lose my lunch. I could go no further. Brussel Sprouts would have to sit untouched by my hands. Others were brave enough to try it and paid the price. After a friend tasted it he uttered words that I had never before known to exist, so horrible on my ears. I later wafted the scent of Brussel Sprouts Soda to my nose and was ever-grateful I never tasted it. If the smell of rotten key lime pie doesn’t turn your stomach, you might like it.
So please, learn from my mistakes. Jones is doing this for a good cause, but is it really worth it to torture your taste buds in such a cruel manner?