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Sodastream Soda Maker

It is no state secret that I am hopelessly addicted to soda. I swear I’d go into withdrawal within hours if I was left without a source of that sweet nectar. The feel of the bubbles tickling my nose, the beautiful sound that the bottle makes when being opened, the slight jolt from the caffeine; all wonderful traits of soda that I refuse to live without.

Now you can create these bubbly concoctions in your own home. For a few years now, I’ve had the fantasy of owning my very own soda fountain. That idea is completely impractical; the initial cost would be enormous, and it would take years to recoup your investment. Not to mention space constraints, upkeep costs, and the operational learning curve involved with working on a piece of machinery like that. Sodastream drink maker eliminates all of those problems, and offers a line of ‘mini fountains’ at affordable prices.

No larger than a large coffee maker, the Sodastream will make sparkling beverages for you one liter at a time. The kit arrives with the ‘chassis’ that holds everything together, two one-liter extra-strength reusable PET plastic bottles, a gas canister, and some syrup (amount/type depends on what you order). Set up was fairly straight forward, but I do recommend browsing the instructions before trying to put things together. After everything is assembled, the Sodastream operates at the push of a button; just screw on the bottle of (cold!) water, and you’re good to go. The instructions say to give the button 3 presses for ‘average’ fizziness, but I wasn’t satisfied with anything less than 4 ‘shots.’ Then you add the syrup slowly, cap it, give the bottle a very gentle shake, and then you can start sipping.

The syrup I’ve sampled thus far I’ve enjoyed. Calorie wise, even the ‘regular’ versions have around half the sugar as the major brands, and the flavor doesn’t suffer for it  all that much. The ‘cola’ had a bit of a ‘store brand’ thing going on, but it was still more than drinkable. There are a large variety of flavors, sweetened and diet, as well as an energy drink blend, and a line of extracts that help you create flavored sparkling-water.

One idea that the folks at Sodastream seem to be pushing is Earth friendliness. The idea is sound; by using this machine along with the reusable bottles, you’re going to help eliminate excess waste, thus helping the environment. Very noble ideal.

Packages start at $79.99, and I think it’s useful enough that you’ll at least get your money back out of it. The Sodastream is a bit of a novelty, and I’m certainly not going to give up the name brands for good, but I love having it around. Recommended if you’re a soda enthusiast such as myself. ‘Yea!’

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–Jeremy Hobbs

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