You can now have your ranch and drink it, too
Would you try a soda with a flavor as unique as ranch dressing?
America's fascination with drowning bland vegetables and sprucing up pizza with ranch dressing persuaded one company to push the flavor further than a dip.
Rocket Fizz Soda Pop & Candy Shops has launched its newest flavor of soda, Lester’s Fixins Ranch Dressing. Co-owner Ryan Morgan overuses the buttermilk-based dip, so his business partner Rob Powells decided to capture the flavor and make it available to his friend at all times.
A Huffington Post editor describes the taste: “The initial smell isn’t great. But if you can get past that, the soda tastes like sweet candy. Not ranch dressing so much, but pleasant enough.” Others described the smell as overly pungent of synthetic blue cheese.
The Rocket Fizz Soda Pop and Candy shops have one-stop soda pop and candy shop franchises in 10 states. The stores want to cater to the kid in everyone, selling fun and nostalgic products. Ranch Dressing joins the ranks of other unique flavored sodas; Lester’s Fixins include savory flavors like Bacon, Buffalo Wing, and Sweet Corn sodas, while the Melba’s Fixins line includes sweet flavors like Apple Pie, Peaches & Cream, and Sweet Tea sodas.
16 Of The Worst Food Abominations That Will Make You Gag
In recent years, food mashups have stolen the spotlight, and it’s easy to see why. There’s something so alluring about combining fan favorites to make insanely delicious creations. (Hey, sushi burritos and cronuts. We’re lookin’ at you.) Yet, much to the dismay of our stomachs, there are many experiments that result in unfortunate food abominations.
What exactly is a food abomination, you ask? For most people, it’s a food product or dish that pushes the envelope way too far.
Maybe the combination of ingredients used is so off-beat that it’s awful. Or, perhaps the flavors mesh in a way that makes your heart sink. In some cases, a food abomination is a dish that’s so high in calories, sodium, and grease that we can’t believe someone actually made it. But then again, anything is possible in the world of food, which you’ll soon see in the list below.
The following weird foods will either make you gag, wince, and/or cry, so don’t say you haven’t been warned.
FIZZ! POP! BANG!
What’s happening? What are the take-ways?
As the antacid tablet and water mix and fizz, carbon dioxide is released inside the canister. The baking soda and vinegar has the same reaction. Pressure from the gas builds and eventually pops the lid off. The thrust, or push, of your rocket is related to how much pressure built up inside the canister before the top popped off.
Try experimenting with the amount of antacid or baking soda you use. Which works best? Does the temperature of the water matter? If you have a question, it can be an experiment!
What is happening inside that film canister?
First of all, we all know that the most common effervescing tablet used in a film canister rocket is Alka-Seltzer. In fact, the company that makes Alka-Seltzer is so proud of the fact that it can be used in science experiments they have a whole page on their website dedicated to it! Not to rain on the Alka-Seltzer science parade but, just between us, the generic brands also work perfectly well for this activity and it saves some moolah!
When you mix these effervescing tablets with water, a chemical reaction takes place between the citric acid and sodium bicarbonate contained in the tablet and the water. This chemical reaction creates many, many bubbles of carbon dioxide gas. Citric acid is a weak acid and is in the juice of most citrus fruits like lemons or limes. Sodium bicarbonate is, well, basically baking soda. Which explains the baking soda and vinegar reaction too.
You already know what happens when you combine this chemical reaction with a film canister, when it pops, it goes up!
Why does your rocket go up?
It goes up because gas is building and building in the closed film canister and since the lid is the weakest point of the canister, the lid pops off and all that gas comes rushing out of the end of the canister. This action can be explained using Newton’s Laws of Motion, more specifically it is an example of Newton’s Third Law of Motion – “Every action has an equal and opposite reaction”.
The gas rushing out of one end of the canister (the action) causes your rocket to move in the opposite direction (the reaction). This is exactly how all rockets work whether you use an effervescing tablet as your fuel or a chemical rocket propellant like they do at NASA.
#4 Bicycle Pump and Water DIY Rocket
Calling all biking dads and moms! If you have old punctured inner tubes at home and from your favorite bike shop, save them! In this project, an old inner tube becomes the centerpiece of a bicycle pump DIY rocket.
What You Need
- A big empty water or soda plastic bottle (1L or 2L)
- 1 inner tube (ask for discarded inner tubes at your local bike shop)
- Utility knife
- Hand or electric drill
- 1 cork (made from actual cork)
- 1 bike pump
- Check the opening of your water bottle. If the cork fits in it, great. If not, microwave it for 20 to 25 seconds. It will expand, become soft and you can then fit it inside the opening of your bottle. Remove when cold.
- Cut out the area around the valve of the inner tube, keeping only the actual metal piece with a bit of rubber around it.
- Drill a hole slightly smaller than the valve into the cork and insert the valve through the cork, keep the pumping end outside. This is your valve adapter.
- Fill the water bottle 1/3 with water and insert valve adapter.
- Time to launch! Attach the bike pump to the valve adapter, turn the bottle upside down, lean it against something, and pump away!
Make your rocket more aerodynamic by adding a nose and fins! This video tutorial uses similar principles for making a water rocket using a water bottle with a plastic lid, but I find it more complicated than the cork stopper as it includes a glue gun. Your choice!
Rocket Fizz Soda Taste Test: These Flavors Are Not Your Everyday Soda
If there's one thing you can say for sure about Rocket Fizz it's that their soda flavors are inventive. They don't stick to the traditional Cola or lemon-lime flavors. No, the folks at Rocket Fizz are pushing the limits when it comes to sodas. And it doesn't look like they're going to stop any time soon.
The newest addition to their line, Ranch Salad Dressing, was interesting to say the least. A taste test of their Lester's Fixins line last year -- which includes flavors such as Bacon, Peanut Butter & Jelly, and Sweet Corn -- made some of us claim we'd swear off the company and their sodas. But their creativity keeps bringing us back, despite how we sometimes feel about the actual taste.
We took a look at their entire line, which is extensive, and decided to give Rocket Fizz sodas a serious tasting. We tasted 18 of their sodas, ranging from not-so-strange flavors like Root Beer Float to more creative ones such as Banana Nut. There was a range of reactions to the sodas from our Taste editors, with notes like "tastes like a cross between grape soda and Bazooka gum" (Radioactive Soda), "UGH. Just UGH" (Watermelon) and "tastes like a Sunkist with cream. Yum!" (Nuclear Orange).
One general consensus was that the Blue Cream soda was a crowd pleaser -- its Mighty Mouse label was a definite bonus. But the real winner of the bunch was the Black Licorice. While you do have to be a licorice (or Sambuca) fan in general, we all unanimously agreed that the flavor was spot on and it had just the right amount of sweetness. It's a soda flavor we never knew we wanted, but are happy to know is around. The most detested of all the sodas was the Peanut Butter flavored soda. One editor could only respond with "No, no, no. Foul!"
We also tasted Jalapeno Green Apple, Graham Cracker, Banana Nut, Red Licorice, Mud Pie, Licorice, Marshmallow, S'mores, Radioactive (Mulberry), Watermelon, Martian Poop (Marionberry), Root Beer Float, Rocket Fuel, Cotton Candy, Blue Cream, Peanut Butter, Key Lime Pie, and Nuclear Orange (all with varying opinions).
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We've also tried a bunch of natural sodas. Check out how they fared in our taste test.
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Lester’s Fixins Buffalo Wing Soda
While exploring Nashville, we saw this cute soda and candy store called Rocket Fizz. I was on the hunt to find a Goo Goo Cluster to try, and this seemed like the perfect store to get them. Goo Goo Clusters are a popular candy/chocolate treat native to Nashville. While pinning for my Nashville trip, it said I had to get one, so I did. They were delicious by the way. If you like Turtles, you will like these.
Anyway, Rocket Fizz had a huge selection of different and obscure flavors of soda. Chris loves trying different sodas. He’s tried bacon flavored and ranch flavored so far. Neither were good, but fun to try. He saw that there was a Buffalo Wings flavor, so he had to get it.
When first trying the soda, you get a whiff of orange soda. When taking the first sip, it tasted very much like orange soda. Right after swallowing though, there is a burning/hot aftertaste left in your mouth. I was only able to take a couple sips. The soda wasn’t refreshing at all, but was fun to try. It didn’t have any real buffalo flavor to it, but the burning kind of made up for that.
Launching Rockets with Fizz
I don’t think that I can say ‘Rockets aren’t cool’. I know all the words on their own but in that order, they just make no sense to me. This experiment is one of my ‘go to’ experiments to have on any table for a science show because even if you’ve seen them launched a hundred times it’s still exciting waiting for the ‘pop’.
- A container with a ‘push on’ lid like a film canister or a bottle with a cork
- Something that will produce gas – fizzy tablets or sodium bicarbonate (baking soda)
- Vinegar (the distilled stuff is cheaper and works just fine!)
- Be prepared for some splashes of liquid as the rocket launches!
The general idea here is to put your “fizz-maker” into a container, pour in your vinegar and get the lid on as fast as possible. I wish that I could tell you a foolproof recipe for any container but unfortunately the precise amounts of each ingredient depend on how big your container is, how tightly your lid clips on and how much gas your fizzy tablets make!
- With just a cork in the top of a bottle this size, you need to check what’s above the bottle! The cork here hit our ceiling which is 3 m high – something to bear in mind!
- If you add too much vinegar then it can foam out of the top before you can get the cork on!
- The fastest launch will happen when you use bicarbonate of soda (remember that increase in surface area means a faster rate of reaction, friends!) but the tablets are much easier to work with. I’ve found that fizzy vitamin tablets don’t work quite as well as other fizzy tablets – perhaps because of the extra flavouring added to them which might make the mix quite goopy – but if you can get them into the flask then they will still work! I just had a nightmare with them getting stuck in the neck of the flask.
- I like to use a glass bottle with a rubber bung in the top. The bottles I use came from Home Sense as a pack of ‘assorted bottles’ – they look interesting and actually work really well! They came with corks made of… well, cork – and these worked out okay but the real winner was buying some rubber bungs. The rubber makes for a better seal and makes the launch a bit more reliable.
- A classic container for this experiment is just to use a film canister but, admittedly, these are becoming more and more rare these days so amongst people who do Science Shows, film canisters are the treasure they would save from a house fire.
This bottle is about 100 mL in total and I’ve found that half a teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda and 10 mL of vinegar works best for this size.
Pour in the bicarb, pour the vinegar in and quickly get the cork in nice and tight…. then wait….
The cork flew totally out of shot from one frame to the next in this video, so it’s really quick!
So for my friends with low ceilings who want to stop a cork knocking the light out of the sockets, one tip is to make the cork a bit heavier. You could do this with plasticine or by making a rocket out of paper.
I used some copper wire to attach the rocket in this video to the cork. The rocket was launched about a metre and a half into the air.