There was a time when a soda – whether you called it that – or “pop,” or the generic “coke,” (if it really was Coca Cola, Pepsi or RC), was dark. With the exception of the occasional orange or grape soda, sweet, liquid effervescence was usually a BROWN beverage.
7-Up is the first popular “clear” soda I recall drinking in my life. Unfortunately, I associate it with being sick. Because, that’s the only time I drank it. It was mom’s ready remedy for any stomach upset. 7-UP actually had a successful marketing campaign as the “UN-cola.”
In 1961, Coca Cola created its clear competitor, SPRITE, also with a hint of lemon & lime, dubbed “lymon,” in one if its ad campaigns.
Then, in no particular order, such clear or citrus variations included: Squirt, Fresca, Mello Yello, Mountain Dew, and Sierra Mist.
When I asked my Facebook friends what other sodas come to mind, they offered the following:
Dr. Pepper – but of course. What soda list would be complete without calling in “the doctor.” Speaking of which, 1973 – Enter a competitor for the doctor – Mr. Pibb – while Pibb carried the respectful title of “Mr.” – not exactly a credentialed one like “Dr.” Nevertheless, a tasty drink, quite similar to the Pepper.
One friend mentioned Upper 10, that I would learn debuted in 1933, first bottled by Nehi, then RC.
As I waxed nostalgic about carbonation overall, I remembered how my grandmother, a diabetic, would somehow down the first of the sugar-free (saccharin-laden) drinks – TAB, as well as Diet Rite colas. How she would have enjoyed the current cornucopia of sugar-free and “light” sodas.
This is obviously, in no way, meant to be an historically accurate chronology of carbonated beverages – just a mental meandering, as usual…
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