Grown Up Soda (GUS) started in 2003 by Steve Harsh and Jeannette Luoh (former real estate lawyer). The website states “the founders and their friends were looking for in a beverage; something not so sweet like everything else out there”
When the company Mr. Harsh worked for collapsed in 2001, the veteran of consumer packaged-goods business sought to return to the industry. After nine months of searching, he only landed one job interview. Frustrated and at loose ends, Mr. Hersh revived a childhood interest of selling his own food product. He always wanted hot sauce, yet in 2003, released 4 of the 11 flavors he and Ms. Luo created in their kitchen.
So it is time for the review. (Click here for information on the rating criteria and a table of all the root beer tested or to be tested.)
Ingredients: Purified sparkling water, cane sugar, birch oil and other natural flavors, caramel color (from sugar), quillaja, citric acid.
|I was concerned with quality control from the start - the label is crooked.|
Nutrition 12 oz. serving (from the bottle)
10 mg Sodium.
24 g (8%) of Daily Carbohydrates
0 mg Caffeine
Aroma and Flavor – 1.25 out of 3 mugs
This is a lower calorie soda the stated it is “dry”. I have seen the ingredient “quillaja” in my review of Boots Sarsaparilla and Tree Fort (both rated low), yet not sure I comprehend its use or taste.
Upon opening I was surprised at the sweet aroma. After first drink, I understand what Mr. Harch may like this beverage. It was very similar to the root beer stevia drops in seltzer water I have often used. While it was not bad, it was just nothing complex or memorable. It was slightly medicinal and I wonder if that is the Quillaja?
Head – 2.5 out of 3 mugs
The brew foam up well and was slow to dissipate. Very solid and this appears to be the only strong positive in my review.
Zip – 1.25 out of 3 mugs
There is no notable flavor mix to the beverage. It is simple and smooth, yet the carbonation is what make the zip, not much else.
Post Consumption Impression – 1.25 out of 3 mugs
This is a good effort to achieve low calorie carbonated beverage, although not one I would choose from a large number of beverages.
Would I recommend this at 6.25 out of 12 mugs?
If you grew up with mineral water or seltzer in juice, and desire it slightly higher in carbonation, this is your beverage. If you are looking for a solid flavor mix tantalizes you tongue, there are other I would suggest. While it scores 6.25 out of 12, if you remove the head score, this brew was near the bottom of my list (61st of the 72 reviews to date).