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Friday, July 24, 2009

Sweet Blossom Elderflower Soda

One of Lovecraft's most famous stories--and it's a long one, out to novella-length--is At the Mountains of Madness. It's a stirring, adjective-laden tale of a doomed expedition to an ancient, prehistoric city in Antarctica, the discovery of the preserved antediluvian inhabitants, and the eventual death and/or insanity of the vast majority of the expedition members. You know--a Lovecraft story.
The inhabitants of the city end up being known as "Elder Things". They're sentient part-plant creatures who came to Earth billions of years ago.
When I found "Elderflower Soda", that story came to mind. It probably says something about me that the term "Elderflower" makes me think less of idyllic sylvan or pastoral settings, and more of eldritch tentacled horrors from outer space.

In any case, when I found "Elderflower" soda at Galco's, I had to get some. We've previously reviewed Sweet Blossom Soda's herbal offerings--see their Rose Petal review--and found them nice and pleasant, but a bit odd. I don't know whether Elderflower is more likely to make a good soda than rose petals, but such speculations are not in the purview of a Quaffmaster. Whether it's good or not is not the issue; it's only whether it's Weird.

The Kibbitzer-in-Chief reminds me that in the classic movie "Arsenic and Old Lace", the nice old ladies poisoned people with elderberry wine. I presume that elderberries derive from elder flowers. Perhaps they are derived from Elder Things.

Where and when: purchased April 2009 at Galco's, Los Angeles
Color: very pale beige, with a yellow tint.
Scent: Hmm. Pearlike; quite sweet, fruity, yet not cloying. A nice smell. Very little tart in it.
Taste: Very nice, quite a surprise. Floral and fruity, cool. The taste is also very pearlike, with just a bit more acidity than the smell, but not even going so far as tart. Tastes a bit like the smell of roses or tulips. The aftertaste is somewhat similar to that of the french-vanilla type of vanilla cream soda; a bit of acid and a creamy vanilla note, although this is more fruity. If I were to imagine a pear cream soda, it might taste like this. Given that pears are my favorite fruit and cream sodas are among my favorite sodas, this is emphatically a good thing.
While the Lead Assistant Tester is attending a robotics seminar today, the rest of the Lab staff and visitors Long Rod McBean and Punctilius all like it. They all comment on the pear, vanilla, and floral notes with approval.

Good stuff. Highly recommended. Burp. Tekeli-li!

Quaff rating: 4. Really nice!
Cough rating: 0. Nothing to object to.


  1. You might also like elderflower tea. Get it at your local herb store, make it like tea, easy. Tastes like you are describing, sweet, pearlike, flowery. I take it straight, sugar makes it too sweet for me. It is also hands down the best allergy medicine around, works better than all that junk you get at the grocery store and seriously, zero side effects. During hay fever season I sip on it all day long, a big coffee mug full lasts me most of the day, unless I forget and drink it like it tastes good. Which I inevitably do. But no problems with overdosing. Just make another mug, enjoy. Also good over ice. Or with tequila and soda.


  2. At IKEA, you can buy elderflower drink and concentrate. One of my favorites flavors!

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