Of all the flavors I thought would return as part of the 2007 Jones Soda Holiday collection, Jones Soda Candy Cane Soda was not one of them.
Based on last year's review, it was not received with positively. An excerpt:
While not bile-inducing like Turkey & Gravy Soda, it was not pleasant. You know when you go to the dentist and they clean your teeth with something on the automatic brush-thing that is somewhat pepperminty in flavor? Yeah, Candy Cane Soda is the liquid form of that. Throw in an aftertaste that really sticks with you and one wonders what Jones was thinking with this flavor.
Yet, here it is, back for another go in 2007! It's a weird world.
Just like last year, Candy Cane Soda is very pink in color.
It's a light pink, considerably less red than other holiday-inspired drinks of late, such as Pomegranate 7Up or Sierra Mist Cranberry Splash. There's still quite the minty smell present with this beverage, which leads one to think that we're in for the same old review!
Those Jones Soda folks… they like to keep things exciting, however. In fact, on the bottles as well as the cardboard packaging used with the 4-Packs, you'll read the following:
Every year, the fat guy in the suit gets all the credit. But who gets the job done? It's the elves, and we think it's time to do something for them.
Let Santa have his milk & cookies, we made this for those who do the real work. So relax, have a soda, and raise a glass toward the North Pole. Let's drink a toast to the little guy…
Perhaps the elves put a little suggestion in Santa's ear after reading our negative reviews of 2006's Candy Cane Soda because for 2007, there's something different! Could the inclusion of inverted cane sugar really make that much of a difference?
While I'm still not a fan of the scent of this drink, the flavor has improved greatly. It's less medicinal when compared to last year's edition, with a larger emphasis on the mint. I'm not sure if this was an actual formula change or just mentally knowing that there's been a change in sweetener, but my reaction was positive.
For the record, here's a comparison of the nutritional and ingredient information between the 2006 and 2007 versions
Nutrition Facts: Calories – 180, Sodium – 35 mg, Total Carbohydrate – 45 g, Sugars – 45 g
Ingredients: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Phosphoric Acid, Natural Flavors, Sodium Benzoate and Potassium Sorbate (as preservatives), Acacia Gum, Citric Acid, Medium Chain Triglyceride, Red 40.
Nutrition Facts: Calories – 190, Sodium – 35 mg, Total Carbohydrate – 47 g, Sugars – 47 g
Ingredients: Carbonated Water, Inverted Cane Sugar, Phosphoric Acid, Natural and Artificial Flavors, Sodium Benzoate and Potassium Sorbate (as preservatives), Acacia Gum, Citric Acid, Medium Chain Triglyceride, Red 40.
Candy Cane Soda is a light drink with an improved taste. It's now Kosher, which makes things more exciting… I guess. If you want to get really crazy, do what some of my friends did… mix Candy Cane Soda with Christmas Cocoa Soda… instant Chocolate Mint Soda! What a great idea!
Overall, of the 4-Pack flavors made available this season (Jones Soda Gingerbread Man Soda, Jones Soda Christmas Cocoa Soda, Jones Soda Candy Cane Soda), I'd still rank Candy Cane as #3 (with Christmas Cocoa at #1). It's not a horrible drink, and it's improved quite a bit from last year, but it's still not my favorite.