There's a neat local market in Vista. It's right by the freeway, and they're usually doing some serious barbecuing of ribs on their outdoor grill thing, which results in huge clouds of fragrant smoke drifting over the freeway. I've heard a lot of conversations along these lines:
Person 1: "Hey, I got some great ribs the other day."
Person 2: "Where did you go?"
Person 1: "That place that always looks like it's on fire."
...and Person 2 always knows where they mean.
Anyway, it's called Primo's, and mostly deals in Mexican groceries (and some great barbecue). While I was there last, I saw that they had a variety of Weird Sodas which I hadn't seen before. Alas, I was on a guacamole-acquisition mission whose completion would brook no delay, so I only had time to grab these two.
They had a display in which tiny (half pint) plastic bottles of a soda I had never seen were on offer. On closer inspection, the brand name was revealed to be "Chubby". Needless to say, I had to grab a few. There were three flavors, Cola, Blueberry, and Pineapple. I decided to leave the pineapple for another day.
Where and when: purchased June 2009 at Primo's Market, Vista, CA
Color: The Cola flavor is cola-colored, dark brown. The Blueberry is bright, transparent blue.
Cola: Pepsi-ish, as opposed to Coke-esque. Sweet, slight bitterness, more lemon than orange.
Blueberry: That's really weird. It smells about 60% like gum, 30% like unspecified berry, 5% vanilla, and 5% swimming pool chlorine.
K-i-C: "It smells like blue Blow Pops...in a hot tub." *pauses* "I want a Blow Pop."
Cola: Strange. The initial taste is simple cola, but it fades out in a few seconds. Lemon Pledge takes its place. Seriously--it has a strong taste of lemon, and slightly sweet, and vaguely oily and synthetic. I suspect my pharynx is sparkling clean. It lingers for quite a while.
Blueberry: That's the first time the unpleasant taste has been in the *initial* taste, then faded out. The chlorine is gone almost immediately. The gum/berry stays for a bit longer, and are gradually joined by...lemon Pledge. I kid you not, it's the same thing! It ends up tasting a bit like a lemon crepe with powdered sugar and berries, eaten on a recently-polished table in a resort restaurant which happens to be located near the swimming pool.
Cola and Blueberry get the same ratings.
Quaff rating: 2.5. Very sweet, interesting flavors, easy to drink.
Cough rating: 1.0. Furniture polish is not very high on the yummy scale.
Harmony Springs Root Beer
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