Coffee + carbonation is the best of all beverage worlds
Coffee Soda: a recent trend that actually has a much longer history than you’d think. While there’s no standardized way to prepare or serve it (options range from your carbonated nitro cold brew to espresso and seltzer cocktails), there’s no doubt that consumers looking for a buzz are turning to this hybrid of cola and java in increasing numbers.
For the latest evidence, look no further than Slingshot Coffee, a North Carolina cold brew company that’s now entering the burgeoning beverage category. They’ve moved into a new 13,000 foot space in order to keep up with demand for the cold brews they sell at places like Target and Whole Foods, and they’re using that expanded production capability to pump out their own take on coffee soda.
While there’s no platonic form of coffee + carbonation, it looks like Slingshot’s version is designed to play up the “soda” angle while staying true to their cold-brewing roots. The two flavors they’ve unveiled so far are Citrus Vanilla Cream Soda and Black Cherry Cola, which take their cues from the favorite old-school soda fountain offerings of co-founders Jenny and Jonathan Bonchak, with the obvious coffee twist.
It seems this isn’t some quick attempt to cash in on a growing trend, but rather the result of an ongoing passion project. “We started developing and testing coffee soda recipes way back in 2014 with our little coffee bar, Weekend,” Slingshot’s website says. “And we couldn't be more proud to bring them to life in two amazing flavors that are incredibly classic yet undeniably tasty.”
The end result, they say, is a drink that’s “approachable, fun and highly chuggable.”
Though the short, stocky cans give off a soda-like appearance, the contents at least seem to be a bit healthier than slugging a Diet Coke for your morning (or afternoon) caffeine fix. Much like other trendy, artisanal sodas, Slingshot uses real fruit juice and natural cane sugar, creating a 60-calorie offering with significantly less sugar than a traditional soda.
Available in pockets of the southeast now, Slingshot’s coffee soda is being prepped for a wider release in late August or September. Now if only there was a Lacroix that had coffee in it, then all of our problems would be solved.