Sep. 8th, 2013

I should perhaps make some comments on my own personal tastes, since they will undoubtedly influence how I describe the sodas I review.

While I do not turn up my nose at highly-sugared, very sweet sodas, I don't actually seek them out, and given a choice, will generally choose something tart or even bitter over something sweet. I'm the kind of person who will consider bitter lemon or tonic water to be drinkable, even enjoyable, in its own right, and not strictly as a mixer. I will choose a root beer, birch beer, sarsaparilla, cola, or similar "harsh" flavor over a very sweet fruity flavor like orange or pineapple.

I prefer moderate carbonation; too little carbonation tends to leave a soda too sweet (more carbonation means more carbonic acid, which has a sourness that counters the excessive sweetness of most syrups); too much does uncomfortable things to my upper digestive system (burping is rude, and it's very uncomfortable to have a bubble that needs to be burped up).
Boylan MASH, Lemon Peel Ginger Root

MASH meets the definition of ‘soda’ that I mentioned in Jerking Around #0(b) - it’s carbonated and non-alcoholic. Boylan’s, the manufacturer, calls it “a low calorie water drink”. There are four flavors; I’ll be reviewing them all, each in its own entry in this series.

The Lemon Peel Ginger Root is a cloudy lemon-yellow color. The carbonation is very light - about the only sign is in the fizziness on the tongue and a slight pressure release on opening the bottle.

The flavor is quite lemony, with overtones of ginger and the bitterness of most citrus peels - a very nice combination. One can also taste some sweetness, enough to take the edge off the flavors, perhaps a bit more, but definitely not overpowering. It’s perhaps just a bit too sweet to be acceptable as a palate-cleanser, but I would certainly find it more refreshing on hot days than the typical mass-market soda.

I would happily drink this with just about anything, but would recommend it with dishes that have heavy or cloying flavors.

I've only seen this sold as single 20 oz. plastic bottles.
5 Cal/fl oz (16.9 kcal/100ml)
Sweetened with crystalline fructose and sucralose.

Boylan Bottling Co. - note that Boylan's website has absolutely no mention of this product line anywhere to be found.

ETA: I find this product at a local ‘gourmet’ deli, and also at one of the food vendors in the Dining Court at Grand Central Terminal.



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