Making Soda Pop

July 13, 2011

Yes, it is pretty easy to go to the store and buy soda pop already made, so the soda pop industry has us hoodwinked into thinking we shouldn’t try to make our own soda pop. Well, I started making a mint wine that tasted really good young and fizzy, and you can’t just go out and buy mint soda pop, so get creative and try making other flavors of pop. Not to mention, it has real sugar in it and not corn syrup!

For my first batch, I used Rainbow Flavors cola and raspberry soda extracts that can be found in any homebrew store. Honestly, I found the directions that came with them frustrating, as they will tell you how much extract and sugar, sugar substitutes, or honey to use, and how to handle the yeast, but they kind of gloss over making the solution.

I set about a quart of water on the stove with 1 cup of sugar and heated it enough to dissolve. I then added another quart of cold water, and pitched into it an ale yeast per Bader Brew Supply’s directions. I then added initially 1 teaspoon cola extract and ½ teaspoon raspberry, but upon tasting it, it was weak. Maybe cola always needs to be added at full strength no matter that it is being flavored? Anyway, I added another half teaspoon of cola extract and a quarter teaspoon of raspberry and called it good.

From there, I poured it into some plastic PET bottles I had, and realized that if I had some old pop or water bottles that they would work fine. I put the cap on them tight, and set them on the counter covered, and periodically squeezed on them to see how carbonated they were. When the bottle was getting stiff without much give, I then placed them in the refrigerator.

Admittedly, this is not a batch that I would give out to people. It didn’t quite carb like I expected, so maybe I didn’t have good yeast as it had been in my refrigerator a while. Maybe I just didn’t leave it out on the counter long enough, or maybe it didn’t do well with light. I think I also got too much extract in it. I’ll try again, though, because I think this would be great for parties.

I think the most frustrating thing about making soda pop from a wine/beer maker’s perspective is that we know two things: x amount of sugar will yield y amounts of alcohol because the yeast will eat pretty much all the sugar. Beware of bottle bombs. Soda making kind of disregards all that with kind of an, “Eh, so what?” After having made a batch, I now understand this laziness: making soda pop is fun, and knowing all that stuff takes the fun out of it.

Further Reading:


One Response to “Making Soda Pop”

  1. […] is a food revolution and books popping up all over on topics like cheesemaking or wine making, making homemade soda pop is widely ignored by the book […]

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