I’m going through one of my trademark “dry spells” currently. It may seem silly, but I have to be in the right mindset to write what I feel is a good review. Correct mindset or not I’m still always on the lookout for a soda to try when I’m out and about. Fortunately for me my local Kroger contained a soda that caught my eye, Private Selection - Peach and Black Pepper.
The Private Selection moniker, in terms of sodas, houses five or six unique soda flavors. Now, when I say unique I not only mean different from one another, but truly special flavors. Bourbon Barrel Cola and Huckleberry Hibiscus Cream Soda are two of the flavors that Kroger has produced for this label. I don’t always enjoy the taste, but they made an effort and it shows.
Today though is Peach and Black Pepper. Mac Fuddy Pepper Elixir is the only other soda I’ve seen that uses some form of black pepper in the ingredients. In doing so it creates a taste you don’t run across often, but are excited to see it when you do. It’s kind of like that cool Uncle you have. Not the creepy Uncle, his brother… the cool one. Anywho, let’s see what this is about.
Right off the bat the scent is certainly more peach than pepper. That kind of sounds like a made up Southern saying. “Oh, you’re talking about Eliza? What a nice girl. If I do say so myself she’s more peach than pepper.” While I did expect the peach to be the dominant taste, I’m a little surprised that I cannot get any sense of the pepper with my nose to the mouth of the bottle. Let’s see if my mouth can do any better…is a sentence that by itself seems kinda weird.
With the first sip I realize that my imagination had this soda all wrong. I was expecting a fairly sweet beverage, with a peach punch to the throat, followed up by a nice heavy spice that burned a bit. That’s not what I’m getting at all.
What I’m getting is a very refreshing beverage with a muted peach flavor, light carbonation, and just a dash of pepper. This soda is sweetened with cane sugar, which helps with it’s refreshing mouthfeel. As an aside, I should really punish myself in someway each time I use the term “mouthfeel”. Initially at least it seems that Private Selection - Peach & Black Pepper is 30% of the beverage I wanted.
Well, this is disappointing. Here I was ready to enjoy this truly unique offering only to be let down by a watery version of what I wanted. Such a shame. It’s not a bad flavor by any means, but not ramping up what was already in there makes it a very forgettable flavor in my opinion.
Well, that bummed me out so much I really don’t feel like writing anymore about it. Private Selection - Peach and Black Pepper sounds like a soda one should end up with a strong opinion of, either love or hate. Instead I got plain white socks for my birthday.
Verdict - Buy a Bottle
This soda was purchased at Kroger