Do You Try 'New' Sodas?


Dark berry Mountain Dew. Tempted to try, or prefer the original? [Photo: Robyn Lee]

Before I started keepin' up on the soda beat for Serious Eats, I was a creature of habit: Coke Zero and Diet Dr Pepper were my soft drinks of choice. (Still are, in fact.) It was only once I started paying attention that I really realized: there are new sodas all the time. Alongside your usual Mountain Dew you'll suddenly find Dark Berry; next to the Jones sodas will arrive Jones Soda "Au Naturel."

While for the sake of this column, I now try every new soda I can get my hands on, I was never tempted to experiment before. Could a cherry-vanilla Diet Dr Pepper, say, really be an improvement on a normal one? It's funny; I'll be the first to try that weird potato chip flavor or the newest M&M iteration, but with soda, not so much. When it comes to drinks I'm a creature of habit, and never felt like wasting two bucks on a drink that might not satisfy in the way my old faithfuls did.

But given how often even the major brands try out new flavors, someone's gotta be trying them. Are you a soda experimenter, or do you stick with your favorites? And if you try out different things, what's the best discovery you've made?