A few weeks ago (yes, this post is very delayed), I was sent a package of Jones Hanukkah Soda to review for Jewlicious. Of course the bright pink color of the Jelly Donut soda and the light brown of the Latke flavor scared me right off the bat so I forced my friends to try it with me. They weren’t too happy at the prospect of drinking brown soda, so I promise illegal substance in exchange and then they were much more inclined to help.
Everyone gathered in my dorm room and I passed around each bottle so everyone could take a sip. Jelly doughnut was the best, but that’s not saying very much. I have a hunch that it would be a good mixer with vodka, because it would disguise any other flavor present in the cup. The apple sauce flavor was okay, too, but again, it had a sweet tinge that left a not so good aftertaste similar to the jelly doughnut. Chocolate coins was…well, it wasn’t chocolate.
And then there’s the latke soda. I love latkes; in fact, they might be my favorite Jewish food, in that I love french fries and latkes are like the Jewish version of fries, except you eat them with sour cream, making them even more caloric and delicious. Now that you know how much I love fried potatos, I was pretty excited to try the latke flavored soda. It did not live up to the expectations. Let’s just say that “potato seltzer” was the first description anyone offered for the Latke flavor. It was gross. Imagine the taste of boiled potatoes mixed with bubbly water (and I’m not talking Perrier here).
Here’s a story about latke soda: My friend Meagan showed up after we had all tried the different sodas. Now, she loves latkes even more than I do. She tried the apple sauce flavor and deemed it good. My other friend Julia told her that if you take a sip of latke and then a sip of the apple sauce, it’s a delicious combination because it actually tastes like latkes dipped in apple sauce! Meagan believed her, and decided to do it. She took a huge swig of the latke one, made the worst face I have ever seen, and then spit it back into the bottle. Then no one else could try it, so she ruined the fun for everyone and got quite angry! We were all rolling on the floor laughing (but that probably had to do with illegal substances ingested earlier).
Moral of the story: Don’t drink latke soda. Ever. What was amazing to all of us is that the soda passed various taste tests in order to be made. Now that hanukkah is over, it almost doesn’t matter, but Jones is still selling the soda on the website. I recommend using it almost as re-gift to all of your goyisha friends for Christmas. All of mine were so excited to play with the dreidel that comes in the box, that even if they don;t like the soda, they will definitely love the kitsch.