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Home Brew Forums > Wine, Mead, Cider, Sake & Soda > Soda Making > Better syrup attempts for sodastream
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Old 04-10-2013, 09:00 AM   #11
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I thought i'd give a heads up that the agave syrup with root beer extract was a big win over corn syrup, and i edited my previous directions. It's expensive but almost twice as sweet as corn syrup, which cant sweeten root beer enough even if you fill sodastreams entire headspace. Nice flavor like subtle honey, although too dominating for most fruit sodas as opposed to root based. Healthy due to low glycemic index and easy to mix due to being less sticky. i wish i could find a non organic version for a price break on the large size, but...


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Old 04-13-2013, 09:45 AM   #12
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Daft....what brand/color agave did you use for your successful rootbeer batch?

Have you stumbled across any 'monk fruit' products yet?


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Old 04-13-2013, 10:25 PM   #13
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I used xagave which uniquely combines blue and (quite different) white agave. It looks darker than the average honey, but since their very interesting web site says lighter is better, I would assume they are light for agave. I am normally skeptical about their health claims about low glycemic, lower calorie, fiber content, rawness, and organic premium. Organic is provable to have no more vitamins, etc. and allows them to use harsh and even dangerous insect and weed agents just because they are "natural".

But on the other hand this agave tastes like a dream (in a wholesome way) and has lingering good aftertaste and seems to settle well in your stomach. I haven't seen monk fruit extractions and normally anything that isn't sucrose or fructose rubs me strongly the wrong way. You got me thinking more about agave which I think is more compatible with brown flavors. Wish I could find a cheap good cola extract, but zat r.b. is still selling on amazon by the dozen for less than the normal price of 3. I realized agave tastes a bit like cream soda, so will post a barely successful recipe for that (by the way only my #4 here was a failure, but I have a great super simple fermented alternative posted at http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f95/my-s...y-soda-384585/ )

9) Cream Soda: Pour many spoonfuls of vanilla extract into a highly carbonated sodastream bottle of water. Then fill 70% of the remaining headspace of the bottle with chilled agave syrup (slowly if it foams a bit). Cap it and tilt bottle... you should see the syrup clinging to the side, but some energetic shaking should mix this and create an appealing foam. You have to rechill to let the pressure go back into the water a bit. The taste is as good as your extract. I use the super cheap pint bottle from Sams club, and have to keep re-reading the label to convince me it is really natural. It does the job, but I almost think artificial vanilla would taste better than this bargain Tones brand.
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Old 04-15-2013, 04:34 PM   #14
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Thanks for info daft, will have to look for 'xagave'. I found Sprecher's Cream Soda at a TruValue hardware store of all places this past weekend (along with at least 50 other hard to find sodas), and I forgot how very good their soda really is. Need to stop and buy a few more bottles. Makes me want to try a blend of xagave and honey in my next cream soda.
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Old 04-20-2013, 07:57 AM   #15
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By the way, these attempts are all assuming no cooking or chopping or dishes...

10) Ginger ale: I bought a tube of fresh ginger paste and chucked a spoonful into a carbonated half liter water bottle already loaded with a bit of lime syrup and a lot of agave syrup. It started a slow motion eruption from the paste, but I capped it fast and shook it a lot to mix the chilled syrup and paste pulp. Looked about the right color with a bit of appealing foam, but tasted kind of bland. Not sure if it needs more (expensive) paste or something else... may edit in changes later. My book says even a success will degrade very fast... gingersol is destroyed by acid and commercial ginger ale often has fake pepper or the like to make it pungent.

P.S. I just noticed a dozen rootbeer extracts on amazon (makes 60 gal) went from under $20 to almost double that recently... gotta snap up those deals fast, and they might become more rare with the internet tax proposal shutting down some small sellers who can't be bothered with tax paperwork for every friggen little state.

Also I tried soda with Monin passionfruit syrup with a bit of lime which was OMG heavenly. I bought Monin pomegranate (their all natural flavor variation) accidentally for $18 marked down from $22 (maybe some local mistake because it looks ten bucks on their web site) and it was a horrible foam bomb. Even after you bottle it, it all foams on the pour and gives a weak result. But drink the syrup straight in a shot glass and it packs a tasty wallop kind of like cointrou (however you spell that orange peel liquor). Reminds me a lot like the old orchard pure fruit frozen concentrate in the foaming and weak taste.
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Old 04-25-2013, 03:15 AM   #16
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I thought I would make a note of something I was moved to do with my monin syrups, although I guess could apply to any syrups. I got sick of an array of part empty syrup bottles always filling the fridge, and none of the flavors exactly hit the spot. So I poured them all into each other until quite mixed into a fruit punch (each still unique). That consolidates into fewer bottles, among other things.

Now the premium one that exploded into too much foam works well in integrated mode. Now the lime tartness doesn't have to be added to each seperately. Now the light ones that needed more personality have a tint of bold ones that were overbearing. Now for this fruit genre, I always pour from the same syrup bottle, then it can be cleared out when emptied in turn. Well, I wouldn't have done this if I could buy exactly what I want from a bigger selection of Monins, but this worked well with what I had.
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Old 05-02-2013, 07:39 AM   #17
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11) Lemon Colada: Sounds like a minor variation on the familiar, but WOW... it's my new favorite. I accidentally filled more than half the remaining headroom of sodastream carbonated water with thawed fresh lemonade concentrate. Then filled the remaining space with monin coconut syrup. Lemon seems a better partner than pineapple, and gives a turbo blast freshness to the coconut milky stuff. A book I have says the part that acid like lemon or carbonic plays in a drink is to blast apart elements so your senses can better pick it up in the aromatic bubbles and liquid, and it seems to work.

Later P.S... i just tried froze pineapple concentrate with coco syrup, which was no good. On another note i tried froze lemon with froze strawberry puree. The flavor is super good but foams insanely, even when poured in the glass.
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Old 05-15-2013, 03:15 AM   #18
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12) Inca Cola: Add to carbed water some cola flavor drops (preferably kola-nut based, but I used Capella artificial superconcentrated cola) and a couple glugs of lemon juice/concentrate. Add a glug (a tablespoon or 2?) of decocainized coca extract http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f95/true...y-cola-407971/ and top off with a bit less than usual agave syrup. Shake hard to mix syrup and chill a bit to reabsorb co2.

Discussion: This has the essential punch of coke for me with a lighter sweetness and color. You may want to add dark corn syrup and caffeine for more conventional taste... don't add more agave which will make it too honey-like. Minimize use of coca extract which is expensive and can make you feel dizzy in quantity... probably a bad idea to use it at all if you can stand conventional concentrates, but it is what Coke uses and wimpy tasting Pepsi doesn't.
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Old 05-24-2013, 04:39 AM   #19
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13) Almond Berry: I love the taste of berries, but not always drinking their juice. This adds monin almond syrup which really rounds out and compliments their flavor. You can start with a lot of frozen berry punch canned concentrate or a mixture of monin berry / red fruit syrups. Add dash of lemon or lime juice to tart up the carbonated water. Then pour in a few oz of almond syrup, cap, and tumble soda bottle.

I tried a lot of combos that didn't work, and may stop here at lucky 13... others can post their own experiments. I also posted my experiment with cheaper co2 for sodastream http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f95/chea...stream-411646/ . I tried to grasp some general rules to explain, like, why coconut syrup doesn't seem to groove with berries, or almond with lemon, but vice versa works for me. I think the taste buds like tension between opposite poles... tart flirting with sweet, and one flavor competing with an opposite one.

So lemon works both for tartness and a bold flavor. Coconut syrup is a bold opposite flavor and is of course sweet. Berries are less bold, and can toy with blander almond syrup for attention. Sweet agave syrup has an assertive flavor that plays off mediciney coca leaf extract for cola. It also plays off muddy-water tasting root beer extract... best when neither component is dominant over each other. I don't know why root beer doesn't seem to need tartness. The mocha drink had a bit of sourness from the coffee, but all in all didn't benefit a lot from carbing.

Update: at the risk of being a half-liter bottle bore, another great advantage of them over the standard 1L bottle is you hardly have to shake before pouring. That bottle is narrower than the big one, but has the same size mouth. Thus the pulp, etc may get trapped at bottom of large bottle, but flows out easily when pouring the small one.
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Old 06-01-2013, 11:03 PM   #20
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14) Terrible Tea: Add a modest amount of defrosted canned berry punch concentrate to cold carbed water. Not enough to let the strawberry flavor assert itself; just the fruity undercurrent which is mostly pear/grape. Add a few squirts of lemon juice or concentrate for minimal tartness. Then add some bottled flavoring drops like apricot or expresso or whatever. Since the whole concept is to not outshine the sometimes timid flavor drops, finish up with the clean taste of chilled corn syrup... as much as can fit in the bottle (it's not that sweet) with a bit of shaking room. Shake the glutinous stuff like crazy, rechill, and be amazed when it turns out better than you think (depending on the wide variety of flavor drops).


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