Then there are Weird sodas which you have to quaff despite the fact that they are almost certainly going to be vile. To quaff all that is quaffable is your calling, and that includes the barely-quaffable but very Weird. These are the ones which, once you have recovered, find you clinging to a spare bit of furniture, gnashing your teeth and bemoaning the fate which led you to open that bottle/can/crate/whatever.
And then there are the ones which simultaneously intrigue and frighten you. They might be okay. They might even be good, but that's not why you have them. You have them because there was something compellingly Weird about them, something which compels you. You can't look away. You find yourself coming back to them, imagining the quaffing to come.
I invite you to look at this, Micoco, the fourth and last of the coconut-based sodas on this ever-lengthening Day of Coconut, and see which you think it is.
|Errrr....that had better not be backwash.|
Keep in mind when looking at that picture that those floating bits of...stuff...don't move. Ever. I think that's what I noticed first about Micoco; the floating bits are perfectly motionless. They must be almost perfectly neutrally buoyant. I'm not sure what to make of that. I had this bottle of Micoco in the Lab fridge for weeks, and they didn't settle to the bottom. As far as I could tell, they didn't shift at all.
I did consider the possibility that the liquid part of the Micoco was more of a gel, and was holding them in place--but no, when you swirl the bottle, they move. They then gradually settle into a new configuration, and stay there, holding perfectly still. There's an almost Zen-like quality about them; points of perfect stillness, neither sinking nor rising, but simply existing in their place. They are neither immobile nor mobile; they move when their surroundings move, let return to a state of equilibrium immediately when their bottle becomes still.
I thought about heating the bottom and seeing if I could get it to act like a circulating glitter lamp, but feared doing so might alter the taste.
In any case, this is a Weird phenomenon, and so I'm gonna quaff it. I have this image of bits of (presumably) coconut pulp floating, perfectly motionless, in my digestive tract, being slowly moved along. Perhaps I will acquire some of that stillness.
Where and when: Appeared in a mysterious flash of blue light on the Lab table, March 2011*.
Color: Cloudy, ever-so-slightly yellow-gray, transparent enough to observe the floating bits of coconut pulp and their unsettling immobility.
Scent: Wow. Very weird. Not really sweet at all-faint, slightly bready or even meaty. More like pot roast, maybe? With potatoes.
JAT: "It doesn't really smell like anything, just a slightly limey-coconut."
K-i-C: *extravagant grimace* "I was thinking slightly of spitup. Not vomit, mind you."
Me: "So like baby spitup?"
LAT: "I see what the K-i-C is saying. I liked it better smelling it through the bottle."
K-i-C: "That's because you couldn't smell it as much."
The smell is pretty foul, actually. I don't get spitup--I still think it's more like a roast potato--but I see what she means.
Taste: K-i-C: *immediately spits it back into the cup*
LAT: "Almost...kind of...creamy. Kind of creamy starch? Ewwww."
Ugh. The texture is fairly thick, slightly syrupy but not sticky. The taste is much sweeter than the smell. Tastes a little bit like pancake batter.
LAT: "I don't like it at all."
K-i-C: "I think my opinion is fairly clear."
*sip* Whoa...ugh. I actually almost spit that sip out. It's sweet, thick, and vaguely starchy. If it were chunky, it would be sort of like a sweet porridge. It's...
Yeah. That's a good word for it. This is an upsetting beverage. It's really quite sweet, but with a nasty undercurrent of starchiness/slight saltiness, and a texture like a thin cornstarch soup. Between the weird taste and disturbing texture, it's enough to make me want to spit it out too. So, naturally, I'm going to have another sip. Because that's what I do.
*restrain urge to vomit*
Oh...good gracious God.
Maybe I don't like coconut as much as I thought.
Interestingly, the label says it's imported from Thailand by the "Squalo Trading Company". I note that "Squalo" is just a letter short of "Squalor", which is the image in my mind.
Just beneath that is a cartoon of a person tossing a beverage container backwards over his head. I would assume that that is a suggestion to recycle, but the container is not labeled as such. Thus, I have decided that it is, instead, a suggestion subtly worked onto the label by someone involved in the bottling process, urging the consumer to dispose of this stuff before drinking it. The blissful smile on the cartoon person's face suggests that his decision has filled him with a sense of peace and contentment. I, too, once had such a look on my face. About ten minutes ago.
But I am the Quaffmaster, and contentment is not my ka.
At least now I know about the floating bits of pulp. Their Zen-like calm is not a result of perfect equanimity, or of unit with the universe. It's the stillness of a praying mantis, waiting for the perfect moment to strike as a newborn butterfly emerges from its chrysalis. They are floating bits of evil, waiting for the stars to be right. On that day, they shall spring into dreadful and portentous motion indeed.
Quaff rating: The flavor is interesting and unusual, in the sense that nobody should make any of it ever again. 1.5.
Cough rating: I've had worse, but not a whole lot of them. 3.5.
* Actually, The rest of the Lab staff got this one for me at Stater Brothers, Vista, CA