What Is A Draft Soda

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If you love soda, you may have come across the term “draft soda” before. But what exactly is it? In simple terms, draft soda is a carbonated beverage that is served on tap. Instead of buying a bottle or can, you can order a glass of soda that is pulled straight from the tap. In this article, we’ll dive deep into the world of draft soda, exploring its history, differences from traditional sodas, science behind the perfect pour, various flavors, and much more.

The History of Draft Soda: From Fountain Drinks to Modern Brews

The concept of a draft soda dates back to the early 1900s when soda fountains were first introduced in the United States. These fountains were essentially dispensers that mixed carbonated water with flavored syrups, creating a soda that was served with a scoop of ice cream. As technology advanced, so did the soda fountain. By the 1920s, soda dispensers evolved to include mechanical pumps that pulled soda from large vats and mixed it with carbonated water right at the point of service, creating the first draft sodas.

In the modern era, draft sodas have seen a resurgence in popularity thanks to microbreweries and craft beverage makers. Draft sodas are now available in bars, restaurants, and even at home, providing consumers with a new and unique way to enjoy their favorite carbonated beverages.

One of the benefits of draft soda is that it allows for greater customization and experimentation with flavors. Craft beverage makers can create unique and complex flavor profiles by mixing different syrups and ingredients directly into the soda dispenser. This has led to a wide variety of draft soda flavors, from classic cola and root beer to more adventurous options like lavender lemonade and ginger peach. Additionally, draft soda is often served at a colder temperature than bottled soda, making it a refreshing choice on a hot day.

The Differences Between Draft and Traditional Sodas

One of the primary differences between draft soda and traditional sodas is how they are served. Draft sodas are typically served on tap, meaning they are pulled from a keg like beer. Traditional sodas, on the other hand, are sold in bottles or cans. The other key difference is the carbonation. Draft sodas are typically more carbonated than bottled or canned sodas. This is because they are mixed with CO2 right at the point of service, creating a fresher, more lively carbonation.

Another difference between draft and traditional sodas is the taste. Draft sodas often have a more complex and nuanced flavor profile compared to bottled or canned sodas. This is because draft sodas are often made with higher quality ingredients and are mixed in small batches, allowing for more attention to detail in the flavoring process.

Additionally, draft sodas are often more environmentally friendly than traditional sodas. Bottled and canned sodas require a significant amount of resources to produce, including plastic or aluminum for the packaging and transportation costs. Draft sodas, on the other hand, are typically served in reusable kegs, reducing the amount of waste generated and the carbon footprint of the product.

The Science Behind the Perfect Draft Soda Pour

Getting the perfect draft soda pour is both an art and a science. Here are the key elements that go into the perfect pour:

  • The proper temperature: The soda should be chilled to the right temperature, usually between 33 and 38 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • The right pressure: The pressure in the keg needs to be set correctly to ensure the proper flow and carbonation.
  • The right glassware: Different draft sodas require different glassware to ensure the perfect pour.
  • The right angle: The angle at which the tap is pulled impacts the flavor and carbonation.

With all these elements in place, the perfect draft soda pour is achieved, providing a refreshing, carbonated beverage that is sure to delight the senses.

However, achieving the perfect draft soda pour is not just about the technical aspects. The bartender’s skill and experience also play a crucial role in ensuring the perfect pour. A skilled bartender knows how to handle the tap, adjust the pressure, and pour the soda at the right angle to create the perfect head and flavor. Additionally, the cleanliness of the tap and lines is also important in ensuring the quality of the pour. With all these factors in mind, the perfect draft soda pour is truly a combination of science, art, and skill.

Exploring the Various Flavors of Draft Sodas

Draft sodas come in a wide variety of flavors, from classic cola to fruity concoctions and everything in between. Here are some of the most popular draft soda flavors:

  • Classic cola
  • Root beer
  • Orange cream
  • Ginger ale
  • Cherry
  • Apple

With new flavors and combinations being created all the time, the possibilities for draft soda are truly endless.

One of the newest trends in draft soda flavors is the use of natural ingredients and flavors. Many soda makers are using real fruit juices and extracts to create unique and refreshing flavors. Some popular natural flavors include raspberry, blackberry, and peach.

In addition to traditional soda flavors, some draft soda makers are experimenting with savory flavors. These sodas often incorporate herbs and spices to create a unique taste experience. Some popular savory flavors include rosemary, thyme, and basil.

How to Make Your Own Draft Soda at Home

If you’re a fan of draft soda, you may be wondering if it’s possible to make your own at home. The good news is that it is possible, and there are a few ways to do it. The first is to invest in a home draft soda machine, which can be purchased online or at specialty kitchen supply stores. These machines allow you to mix your own flavors and carbonate them right at home.

Alternatively, you can create a DIY draft soda system using a kegerator, CO2 tank, and soda syrup. This method requires a bit more setup and requires some knowledge of the science behind carbonating beverages, but it can be a fun and rewarding project for the avid DIYer.

One important thing to keep in mind when making your own draft soda is the quality of the ingredients you use. Using high-quality soda syrup and fresh ingredients can make a big difference in the taste of your final product. Additionally, it’s important to properly clean and maintain your equipment to ensure that your soda stays fresh and doesn’t develop any off flavors.

Another fun way to experiment with draft soda is to try different carbonation levels. Some people prefer a more lightly carbonated soda, while others like a fizzier drink. By adjusting the amount of CO2 you use, you can customize the carbonation level to your liking.

The Pros and Cons of Investing in a Home Draft Soda Machine

While a home draft soda machine can be a fun and convenient way to enjoy your favorite carbonated beverages, there are both pros and cons to consider before making an investment. Here are some of the most notable pros and cons:


  • The ability to mix your own flavors and create unique drinks
  • The convenience of always having fresh soda on tap
  • The potential cost savings over time compared to buying bottled or canned soda


  • The upfront cost of purchasing a home draft soda machine can be high
  • The need for regular maintenance and cleaning of the machine
  • The potential waste of unused syrup or carbonation if not used in a timely manner

Ultimately, the decision to invest in a home draft soda machine comes down to personal preference and lifestyle.

One additional factor to consider when investing in a home draft soda machine is the environmental impact. By using a home draft soda machine, you can reduce the amount of plastic waste generated by bottled or canned soda. Additionally, some machines use refillable CO2 canisters, which can further reduce your carbon footprint.

Another potential benefit of a home draft soda machine is the ability to entertain guests. Having a variety of soda flavors on tap can be a fun and unique addition to any party or gathering. It can also be a great way to impress guests with your mixology skills.

The Impact of Draft Soda on the Environment

As with any consumer product, draft soda has an impact on the environment. The primary environmental impact of draft soda comes from the use of CO2 to carbonate the beverage. While CO2 is a natural component of the atmosphere, the process of creating it for commercial use can be environmentally damaging.

However, compared to traditional bottled or canned sodas, draft sodas have a lower overall environmental impact. Draft sodas do not require individual packaging, and the kegs used to store them can be reused or recycled, reducing waste and energy consumption.

How Draft Sodas are Revolutionizing the Beverage Industry

Draft sodas are not just a passing trend – they are revolutionizing the beverage industry. They are becoming increasingly popular in bars and restaurants, and craft sodas are now widely available. They offer a unique way to enjoy carbonated beverages that is fresher and more customizable than traditional bottled or canned sodas. As more people embrace draft sodas, it is likely that we will see more innovation and creativity in this space, truly revolutionizing the way we enjoy our favorite beverages.

Comparing the Cost of Draft Sodas to Traditional Bottled Beverages

In general, draft sodas are slightly more expensive than bottled or canned sodas. This is due to the added cost of equipment and maintenance required to serve them on tap. However, the cost difference is not significant and is offset by the fresher, more customizable taste of draft sodas.

The Best Places to Find and Enjoy a Delicious Draft Soda

If you’re looking to try a draft soda for the first time, there are many great places to find them. Here are some of the best places to enjoy a delicious draft soda:

  • Craft breweries and taprooms
  • Soda fountains and old-fashioned ice cream parlors
  • Specialty bars and restaurants that feature craft beverages
  • Home draft soda systems and kits

With so many options available, there has never been a better time to explore the world of draft sodas.

The Future of Draft Soda: What’s Next for This Trending Drink?

As the popularity of draft soda continues to grow, it is likely that we will see more innovation and creativity in this space. This could include new flavors, better technology for serving draft sodas, and increased environmental sustainability. One thing is for sure – draft sodas are here to stay, and their influence on the beverage industry will only continue to grow in the coming years.


Draft soda is a unique and delicious way to enjoy carbonated beverages. From its simple beginnings as a fountain drink to its current renaissance as a craft beverage, draft soda has come a long way. Whether enjoyed at a bar or restaurant, through a home draft soda system, or in a DIY project, draft sodas offer endless possibilities for flavor, customization, and environmental sustainability. With its growing popularity and influence, the future of draft soda is bright and full of potential.

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