How to Throw the Perfect (Gay) Soda Tasting for (Gay) You and Your (Gay) Friends

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We’re all on top of a mountain for A-Camp 2016! We’ll be publishing a few articles related to activities that we’re coordinating on the mountaintop so that everyone can participate (sort of). This is one of them!

Wine tastings are fun, right? Who knows!? I sure don’t, because I’ve never been to one. I don’t even like wine that much. I mean, sure, I’ll drink it at a party or wedding or something, or I’ll do the occasional wine shot, but really, I’d much rather have a nice soda. Now, I’m not talking your normal lemon-limes, plain old colas and regular root beers — though those can be nice — no, I’m talking about your Cheerwines, your Chocolate Sodas, your Bacon Sodas — you know, the good stuff. At A-Camp this year, I’m hosting Camp’s first ever Gay Soda Tasting, and here’s how you can do that for yourself.

Soda Tastings are great if you’re underage, you and/or your friends don’t drink alcohol, or you just want to mix it up. Also, soda’s way cheaper than wine. Wine tastings are so 2000 and late.

The first step is to invite people. Now, since this is a fancy-ass event, you might want to make some fancy-ass invitations. I know it costs a little more than making a Facebook event, but really, what’s the point of having money if you’re not going to spend it on your friends? Plus, here are some cute ideas for soda-themed cards where you only need to buy the paper, recycle some old pop tabs and pay for postage. Who wouldn’t want an adorable soda pop tab flower or ladybug or bottle cap flower in the mail? Make sure you clearly state the dress code. Maybe for a summer soda tasting party, you could go with Beach Black Tie (a stylish black one-piece, oversize floppy hat, bee embellished collar and lace up heeled sandals) or for a night time soiree, you could pick Business Dracula Realness (red velvet men’s blazer, the Everett shirt, the Poitier pant, Black on Black tie,  Sally Oxfords and fake blood). You should also put things like time, date and location, but that’s not as important.

If there's one place you don't want to be underdressed, it's a soda tasting party.

If there’s one place you don’t want to be underdressed, it’s a soda tasting party.

Now you’ve got to find a cool local store that sells cool sodas. If they sell cool local sodas, that’s even better. You can also order a lot of great and unique sodas online, but this is fun too. One store that I love is Rocket Fizz, which is a chain, and I go to the one in Salt Lake City, Utah. Rocket Fizz is great because it has hundreds of different bottled sodas, including a lot of its own sodas that come in great and unique flavors for you to try so that you can host party after party. At this point you should also get a bunch of shot glasses so that everyone can drink. I’d also have water on hand so that people can cleanse their palate in between sodas. You can also set up your sound system to play this rad Gay Soda Tasting playlist I made just for this occasion!

Picking the sodas is probably the most important part of this whole thing. It’s important that you have a wide variety of sodas, unless you want to do a themed party, like meat flavored sodas, citrus sodas or sodas that were invented before 1920. You can look at my previous expedition into the world of Alternative Lifestyle Sodas for some great and fun options, or you could try some of these other gems.

  • The Original Green River Lime Soda
  • Delicious Vintage Handcrafted Americana Huckleberry
  • Triple Cola
  • Limited Edition Snooki Wild Cherry Soda (yes, that Snooki)
  • Moxie Original Elixer
  • Jackson Hole Soda South Fork Strawberry Rhubarb
  • The Original Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Bites Soda
  • Old Fashioned Peanut Butter Soda
  • NuGrape Soda
  • Lemmy Sparkling Lemonade
  • Astro Pop Soda
  • Lester’s Fixins Sweet Corn, Maple Syrup, Buffalo Wing or Ranch Dressing Soda
Yes, Snooki soda is a very real thing.

Yes, Snooki soda is a very real thing.

The final step is to gather together all the gays, queers, lesbos, dykes and misfits you know. Once they’re all gathered, pour the sodas into little sample sizes and enjoy. After each taste, make sure you all “hmmm” and “ahhh” and talk about the mouthfeel, bouquet, body and finish. It doesn’t matter if you know what those words mean. This is more about having fun and drinking soda. You can customize it however you want — maybe you want a big whiteboard with a chart and scores for each soda, maybe you want to give score cards to each taster, maybe you want to give awards to the best soda, it’s up to you! Now, go off and taste some soda!

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Mey Rude is a fat, trans, Latina lesbian living in LA. She's a writer, journalist, and a trans consultant and sensitivity reader. You can follow her on twitter, or go to her website if you want to hire her.

Mey has written 572 articles for us.


  1. I just saw some very fancy soda in the grocery store the other day, and I was sorely tempted. it was like 10 bucks for 4 tiny bottles, though, and I wasn’t sure about that. soda: definitely not always cheaper than wine.

  2. Bacon soda / pop! They carry some at my local fancy ice cream place but I’ve never actually tried it.

    I am a Midwesterner, so I don’t actually drink soda, I drink pop. But a pop tasting party doesn’t have the same ring to it.

    • Are you kidding? I’ve never said pop once in my life, but I promise that a pop tasting party sounds like 75% more fun than a soda tasting party. It’s the alliteration.

  3. wait Mey have u tried all of these? Which is ~best~ if i like vanilla and apple and ginger and root beer stuff. Reed’s makes a great apple cider soda mmm sooooodaaaaa.

  4. Ranch dressing soda, srsly? We threw away the bottle. And the glasses. And we almost moved house. My GF’s not letting me near Rocket Fizz anymore any time soon.

  5. Those who live in LA need to go to Galco’s in highland park neighborhood on York Ave. That place is amazing!

  6. Swamp Pop soda, caffeine free sweetened with Louisiana cane sugar sodas with names that are references to Louisiana.
    The company name is also a reference to an obscure local music genre from the mid 20th century.
    Would that qualify as an alternative lifestyle soda? :P

  7. Not 100% sure what a soda is now.. Australians be like “this is just like when they call g-strings thongs, and thongs flip flips..”

    • I think they mean, what we call “soft drink”. Although we don’t have meat flavoured soft drink, or half of the others mentioned either. Oh well! I’ve survived this long!

    • Soda (or pop) is a carbonated beverage ala Coke and Pepsi and root beer. Aka soft drinks or fizzy beverages.

      But like everything now, there are all these smaller companies making more artisanal type flavors.

    • Commercially in the states, like on restaurant menus and food stall signage it’s more common to use the term “soft drink” which has it’s origin in proclaiming a significant lack of alcohol.
      Rather than a good hard drink, it’s soft and commercially an attempt to nationalise a term.
      Because regionally there are like 3 terms still currently in use and who know how many back in the infancy of the soda fountain( my 21st century nieces call them fizzies for example)
      Advertising history y’all.

  8. I haven’t had a drink for 15 days and while that may not be something to boast about for some, I haven’t gone that long without a drink in 12 years. This conscious decision to take an alcohol-hiatus has made me have a new appreciation for soda and thus for this post.

    So far I am really digging a ginger beer for my evening bar hang outs.

    I think I am going to have to have a soda-tasting party as I miss having the gang over for beers and night caps.

  9. Have you ever made your own soda syrups? I have some strawberries I need to use asap and I am considering experimenting…

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