An Addendum

18 07 2008

I am still thinking about Marina and her food question. Had a long conversation with Jessica last night and it seems the answer always comes back to apple pie. Or any pie I suppose. They do indeed call it American Pie, don’t they?

Anyhow I think perhaps we’re on to something with the BBQ sauce suggestion, and I will definitely check into root beer as well, which makes me think of an interesting travel tidbit. Many moons ago, when I spent a month in the car with two college girlfriends gallivanting across the country, we found ourselves in Atlanta.

Now, there is much to see and do in Atlanta, but when you’re just passing through you must be selective. Here is what we chose to do: 1) gorge ourselves on everything Johnny Rockets had to offer since we hadn’t eaten in, I think it was 22 hours? 2) Wander around downtown and in Underground Atlanta, which happens to be a pretty cool, uh…shopping mall. And 3) Visit the World of Coca Cola. Yes, there is actually a World of Coca Cola, and in that world one learns various facts about the sweet carbonated substance. The most memorable part, however, was neither the “world’s largest collection of Coke memorabilia,” nor was it the “fully functioning bottling line,” but the tasting room.

At the end of the tour one finds oneself in a tasting room with more than 60 different varietals of soda. Yes, we tasted various types of coke and coke-like products from all over the world, including, but not limited to, some terrible concoction made with an excess of ginger (no, it was not ginger ale) that I remember coming from Italy. At the end of our tour around the world via coke we were all—as can only be imagine after 60-plus tastings of random sticky sweet substances, AND more Johnny Rockets than is USDA recommended—feeling rather sick.

A few conclusions to this story:

1) It hadn’t occurred to me (or for a long time at least) how much the varietals of soda can be definitive of different cultures. In Spain, for example, I was addicted to Fanta Mandarina, even though I never drank orange soda at home. Fanta Mandarina is entirely different, and I even tried Orange Fanta in South America, but it simply wasn’t the same.

2) Today I discovered that Inca Kola is also made by Coca Cola, (but has its own, very cool, site), meaning that I most likely tasted ithe electric green substance which is ubiquitous in Peru, many years ago; in Atlanta of all places. For those who are wondering, Inca Kola resembles Mountain Dew in color, but is much more similar to Cream Soda in taste. That or bubblegum.

Sabor del Peru

3) Root Beer might just be the thing for Marina to take home, though I worry about her suitcase.

4) Thinking about the World of Coke reminds me why I don’t really drink soda any more. Except when I’m in a foreign place and have to try their version…

Doing as the Peruvians do (with a Spaniard - there's that shrinking world again).

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2 responses

21 07 2008
Alex Robertson Textor

Love the soft drink notes, Suzanne. It was always such a surprise to me that the Fanta I drank as a child in Europe was so much tastier than the U.S. version. And I remember being so disappointed to discover that Brazilian Fanta was closer to the American version than any variation I’d sipped in Europe.

The best mass-marketed soft drink in my opinion is Austria’s Almdudler, which is an herbal drink that contains elderflower among other flavors. You can also find it in Switzerland, Germany (particularly the south of the country), and Belgium. With a schnitzel I’d prefer to drink nothing else.

12 09 2008
Stephanie P

I love Inca Cola! I always get a taste whenever I can get to a great Peruvian restaurant down in LA called Pollo Inca.

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