Kitchen Gadgets: SodaStream Soda Maker
Holiday season is coming up. This is one of many great gadgets that Blackberry professionals will love. For people who spend way too many hours in the office (like me), any way that to make the office a little more bearable is a welcome idea. This sodastream soda maker is useful, professional and a great gift for the upcoming holiday season.
Why you could use one for the office: Take a break from the endless coffee. Trade it in for some mid-day fizz. The bottles are classy, it fits in nicely in an office setting and us a unique way to stand out.
Why you could use one for the home: Grocery shopping is a necessary evil, it simply must be done. One of the worst parts of the grocery experience is carrying heavy bags home from the store. By making your own soda/seltzer are home, you can lighten your grocery bags.
Why its better: With the SodaStream you control the carbonation–how much fizz is in your soda. You can order “flavors” from SodaStream, giving you more soda flavor choices than you ever had before. But I also found that it was equally as tasty and fun to make my own drinks using juices like cranberry, orange and grapefruit.
Added costs: You will have to order new carbonation cartridges every few months. The cost is reduced if you return your old cartridge when getting the new one, essentially a makeshift refill. Just order online and the delivery person will pick up the old cartridges as he or she drops off the new. You can also take the cartridges to William Sonoma for “refill”.
Differences in the range of models: I tested both the Fountain Jet and the higher end Penguin models.
- For home: The Fountain Jet is the heavy duty carbonator. It is the only machine that can accommodate larger canisters, a valuable cost saving attribute for the heavy user. However, what the Fountain Jet has in efficiency, it lacks in pizzaz. The Fountain Jet is the louder of the carbonators and uses simpler soda-esque plastic bottles that screw in before carbonation.
- For work: While the Penguin can only accommodate the smaller canisters, it is far more polished. The Penguin uses pretty glass carafes that insert into a metal mechanized holder. The holder slides the carafe up a track and into a pressurized chamber. There is no screwing, just lock the chamber and carbonate. A much quieter and futuristic process.
Quick Review: I now use this every day. Fresh soda just pops (soda pop–get it?) compared to store bought. The process is easy enough to learn and I have already figured out how to make it exactly how I want it–a true tailored soda. I tested a bunch of flavor packs, some standard ones like Cola are good but the far out ones like pink grapefruit are much better. The initial cost is reasonable, and the refills a bit more pricey. But with the money you save on soda, I suspect it evens out fairly quickly.
Pros: Tastes great. Lighter shopping bags. Reasonable price. Customization factor.
Cons: Refill price and process.
Website: www.sodastreamusa.com, can also be purchased at many retail stores
Note: For this review I purchased a SodaStream Fountian Jet and a was sent a Penguin test unit by the company along with trial flavors.