Irn-Bru

So I’m always on the lookout for a new soda to try… it’s kind of my thing.  Any who, I was in HEB buying groceries and I noticed what I thought was another Kola Champagne, judging by the color and the fact that I was on the international isle.  There sat this orange colored soda in a slender bottle called IRN BRU.  At this point I wasn’t sure if the name was supposed to be capitalized or not, but I was sure of the fact that the name of the drink was probably supposed to be spoken as Iron Brew.  Looking closer at the bottle I see that this IRN BRU is the “original & best”; it also comes from some company named BARR.  I asked my helpful sidekick, Internet-Boy, to look up IRN BRU and tell me what he could.  “First off,” he said, “the spelling is actually Irn-Bru.  Secondly, it’s from Scotland.  Thirdly, please stop calling me Internet-Boy.”  I blankly nodded completely ignoring whatever the third thing was he said because I now knew that a Scottish soda was in my hands.  You see I love Scotland.  Technically I love Ireland and Scotland but today we’re talking about the latter.  Scotland, from the one time I visited, was a beautiful country.  I even thought about trying to work there at one point but failed at doing so because… well honestly I was lazy and really didn’t put much effort into it.  If I could have chosen any other accent in the world I would choose the Scottish accent.  Scotland also produced two things I’m rather fond of, cobblestone roads, Haggis and Amelia Pond.  With all that said I’m not sure I’ve ever had a Scottish soda.  With that said, let’s try this Scottish soda!

This smells a lot like a cream soda, which is fairly close to what Kola Champagne is.  The back of the bottle lists Irn-Bru as a “citrus fruit flavor soft drink,” but I’m having a hard time smelling any citrus.  If I truly try and just imagine some I get just the hintiest hints of orange.  Enough of that though… it’s time for a drink.

You fooled me Irn-Bru; you only seem to taste like cream soda in the first few moments of your journey down my gullet.  In fact there were a couple of citrus flavors hiding behind that sweet creamy aroma.  Orange is definitely the ring leader here, but I think I taste a bit of tangerine as well as a hint of lemon.  Honestly when you mix a bunch of citrus flavors together it’s hard for me to single them out.  The carbonation doesn’t really appear until later in the drink when you swallow the Irn-Bru.  What at one time was sitting on your tongue in a rather docile manner attacks the back of your throat with a cluster of microscopic explosions.    Going back a few steps, I can’t say that I’m all that impressed with the flavor either.  According to Internet-Boy, Irn-Bru has a cult following in the U.K. and I having a hard time seeing why.  Then again I’m not really sure why people love Coke as much as they do here.  Irn-Bru has your basic ingredients list with the exception being sugar over HFCS.  You start off, as I said, with a hint of cream soda, followed by the citrus flavoring and eventually the tiny carbonation explosions.  These three experiences don’t really work well with each other.  There isn’t a smooth transition between each one making the drinking experience awkward at times.  If the secondary flavor was just orange you’d probably have a cleaner transition between steps one and two, but you’d probably lose whatever makes this amazing in the U.K.  With all that said I still love Scotland.  You just keep producing your delicious sheep organ dinners, redheads, and cobblestone roads, and we’ll call it even.

Verdict – Buy a Bottle

~A

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Twist is actually 100% Scottish.  He's 100% a lot of things though.