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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
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    Default Southeast and East Coast Soda TR

    I did a vacation in late July and early August where I started in Nashville, TN and ended off in NYC. I spent two nights in Nashville, and from there I did a day trip into KY (mainly to see Mammoth Cave National Park). After Nashville I went to the Smoky Mountains and entered Great Smoky Mountains National Park through Gatlinburg, TN and briefly crossed over to NC via Cherokee. After that I met up with a rollercoaster group called Theme Park Review in Knoxville, TN and we went by bus to Pigeon Forge, TN (staying there two nights), then through KY to Frankfort, then to OH (Cincinnati and then Sandusky), then to and through PA, then to NJ, and ending off in NYC, where I spent four nights. Anyways, this report is all about the sodas I found and tried along the way.

    While not technically a rare find, I had a Dasani Sparkling Lime on my first United flight (I was flying LAX to Nashville, connecting through Houston), and I've never seen sparkling lime flavored water served on an airline before.


    My first night in Nashville I went to Peg Leg Porker for dinner and had Memphis style dry-rub ribs and Sun Drop of course. This was the first time I've ever seen Sun Drop in a fountain. The fountain was varied, with Coke, Diet Coke, 7up, Sun Drop, Stewart's Root Beer, Hawaiian Punch, and a couple of other choices I can't remember.


    The next day I did a day trip to Mammoth Cave National Park about 90 minutes away in KY. In the main hotel building by the main visitor center I found a Coke machine that had Ski (alongside Mello Yello). Ski is made by the Double Cola Company in Chatanooga, TN and is a citrus soda similar to Mountain Dew, Sun Drop, etc. It was really refreshing in the 90-95F heat and humidity. I liked it better than the fountain Sun Drop, though I don't know if that's a fair comparison.


    After Mammoth Cave NP, I stopped at Beech Bend Park in Bowling Green for a couple of hours (mainly to ride Kentucky Rumbler which a friend recommended) before heading back to Nashville. Having drank a bunch of water before entering the park I wasn't really thirsty, so I didn't buy any drink. I wasn't expecting to find anything significant soda wise here. What I found was an amusement park that serves RC Cola (not Coke or Pepsi). I've never seen an amusement/theme park that serves RC Cola before. This was also the first time I've seen Big Red on a fountain and the second time for Sun Drop. What was even stranger was the Dr soda on tap was Dr Wells (never heard of it before) but the Diet Dr soda on tap was Diet Dr Pepper.

    This is just the first two days of my trip. There's plenty more for me to post, so stay tuned.
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    Last edited by ATownAndrew; 09-09-2016 at 01:46 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
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    Steuben County New York State
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    I miss the days when there were more trip reports here. Even though I have seen these on the reddit site they were much easier to read here. Thanks.
    Whatcha gonna do mama now that the roast beef is gone?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
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    Steuben County New York State
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    Years ago I found Dr Wells along I-81 in northern Virginia, then it disappeared. Later Dr. Wham showed up and is still there.
    Whatcha gonna do mama now that the roast beef is gone?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Central Coast, CA
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    I'm glad someone is reading these. When I get a chance I'll post more pictures.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
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    Continuing on my trip report, the next day before leaving Nashville I stopped at Martin's Barbecue Joint for a Redneck Taco (corn cake topped with pulled pork, coleslaw, and BBQ sauce) and although I had a beer to go with it, I did grab a glass bottle soda to go for my 4 hour drive to the Great Smoky Mountains.


    They had several interesting glass bottle with real sugar soda choices. I've had Cheerwine and Abita Root Beer in the glass bottle before, and Nehi Peach once before, so I went with Sun Drop. I had the Sun Drop in the car while I was driving and it was incredible. The glass bottle version with real sugar was so much better than the fountain version I had two days prior (I know, fair comparison, right?) and any other time I've had Sun Drop in the past.


    Driving east on I-40 for a couple of hours, I stopped at a rest area to use the restroom. There was a vending machine galley with many vending machines. I saw both Minute Maid Watermelon Punch and Fanta Peach at $1.75 each. I was going to get both, but the machines were cash only and I only had enough petty cash to get one (I wasn't going to risk putting a $20 bill in not knowing if I was going to get proper change. I got Minute Maid Watermelon Punch since I had tried Fanta Peach two years ago and assumed I would find it again on my trip (I didn't). The MM Watermelon Punch was very good, especially in the 90F heat with humidity.

    The next day I went into Great Smoky Mountains National Park (a great place to visit by the way) from Gaitlinburg, TN. Eventually I made it Cherokee, NC on the other end of the National Park. It was a small town on Indian reservation land and their general store was already closed being after 6PM, but I found an Exxon station with a Hardee's so I checked it out.


    I found several interesting soda choices. I wanted to buy the store, but knew I had to constrain myself to what I was going to drink on the trip since I was flying back home. I grabbed a Mello Yello Cherry and a Fanta Berry. They had five Fanta flavors, but no Peach. The MY Cherry came in a 24oz bottle while most of the other choices came in 20oz. I drank the MY Cherry right away. It tasted more like Cherry 7UP than Mountain Dew Code Red (which is a good thing) and it was pretty good.


    I also found Cheerwine in Cherokee (maybe I should call it Cheerokee). I was hoping to find the Cheerwine Kreme, but instead found Cheerwine Squeeze, which I didn't know was still in production. I bought a Cheerwine Squeeze as well as a Nehi Peach. I would have also bought the Dr. Enuf if it came in regular, but they only had diet. The Cheerwine Squeeze tasted like a cross between Cheerwine and Mello Yello Cherry, but I liked the MY Cherry better. The Nehi Peach was a consolation prize for not being able to buy Fanta Peach the previous day. It was pretty good, but not quite as good as I remember Fanta Peach being nor as good as when I had it in a glass bottle years ago.

    This will do it for now, but more from my soda adventures soon.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Kansas City, Mo.
    Posts
    81

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    Quote Originally Posted by ATownAndrew View Post
    Continuing on my trip report, the next day before leaving Nashville I stopped at Martin's Barbecue Joint for a Redneck Taco (corn cake topped with pulled pork, coleslaw, and BBQ sauce) and although I had a beer to go with it, I did grab a glass bottle soda to go for my 4 hour drive to the Great Smoky Mountains.


    They had several interesting glass bottle with real sugar soda choices. I've had Cheerwine and Abita Root Beer in the glass bottle before, and Nehi Peach once before, so I went with Sun Drop. I had the Sun Drop in the car while I was driving and it was incredible. The glass bottle version with real sugar was so much better than the fountain version I had two days prior (I know, fair comparison, right?) and any other time I've had Sun Drop in the past.


    Driving east on I-40 for a couple of hours, I stopped at a rest area to use the restroom. There was a vending machine galley with many vending machines. I saw both Minute Maid Watermelon Punch and Fanta Peach at $1.75 each. I was going to get both, but the machines were cash only and I only had enough petty cash to get one (I wasn't going to risk putting a $20 bill in not knowing if I was going to get proper change. I got Minute Maid Watermelon Punch since I had tried Fanta Peach two years ago and assumed I would find it again on my trip (I didn't). The MM Watermelon Punch was very good, especially in the 90F heat with humidity.

    The next day I went into Great Smoky Mountains National Park (a great place to visit by the way) from Gaitlinburg, TN. Eventually I made it Cherokee, NC on the other end of the National Park. It was a small town on Indian reservation land and their general store was already closed being after 6PM, but I found an Exxon station with a Hardee's so I checked it out.


    I found several interesting soda choices. I wanted to buy the store, but knew I had to constrain myself to what I was going to drink on the trip since I was flying back home. I grabbed a Mello Yello Cherry and a Fanta Berry. They had five Fanta flavors, but no Peach. The MY Cherry came in a 24oz bottle while most of the other choices came in 20oz. I drank the MY Cherry right away. It tasted more like Cherry 7UP than Mountain Dew Code Red (which is a good thing) and it was pretty good.


    I also found Cheerwine in Cherokee (maybe I should call it Cheerokee). I was hoping to find the Cheerwine Kreme, but instead found Cheerwine Squeeze, which I didn't know was still in production. I bought a Cheerwine Squeeze as well as a Nehi Peach. I would have also bought the Dr. Enuf if it came in regular, but they only had diet. The Cheerwine Squeeze tasted like a cross between Cheerwine and Mello Yello Cherry, but I liked the MY Cherry better. The Nehi Peach was a consolation prize for not being able to buy Fanta Peach the previous day. It was pretty good, but not quite as good as I remember Fanta Peach being nor as good as when I had it in a glass bottle years ago.

    This will do it for now, but more from my soda adventures soon.
    Excellent finds. When I was in Florida several months ago I saw an empty spot at Hess for MY Cherry.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Central Coast, CA
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    Quote Originally Posted by imawalkingcorpse View Post
    Excellent finds. When I was in Florida several months ago I saw an empty spot at Hess for MY Cherry.
    I'm not sure if they still make the bottled version of Mello Yello Cherry, as the version I found was with the old logo. It was at a gas station in a small, rural town on the less visited NC side of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, so it might have been older stock (I didn't check the expiry date). It's a shame if they stopped making it, as it was really good.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
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    Central Coast, CA
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    Continuing on with Southeast to East Coast Trip, I stayed in Pigeon Forge for a few days (mainly to see Great Smoky Mountains National Park and Dollywood) before moving on to Kentucky and then Ohio.


    This was a Mtn. Dew vending machine I found at the Smoky Mountain Alpine Coaster in Pigeon Forge, TN. While there's nothing out of the ordinary stocked in this machine, its a custom machine for the TN market to remind us where Mtn Dew originated. To the left of it is a Sun Drop machine which has both Sun Drop and Mtn Dew in it. Did I mention how popular caffeinated citrus sodas are in the South?


    Continuing on to Kentucky, I stopped at a White Castle in London (which is a small town there) for lunch. Not only was this my first time trying a White Castle (I've been wanting to try one since seeing the first Harold & Kumar movie), but my first time trying Big Red on a soda fountain. The only other time I've seen Big Red on a soda fountain was on the RC fountain at Beech Bend (also in KY) a few days prior, which shows the popularity of Big Red in KY. I don't know what the official flavor profile of Big Red is supposed to be. Is it a fruity soda, a cream soda, or a combination of both? To me, the closest thing it tastes like is bubble gum, not like Big Red cinnamon gum, but like a tutti-fruity, sugary gum. It's definitely an acquired taste. I was able to drink one cup of it, but after that I switched to Mello Yello for my refill for the road.


    Spending the night in Frankfort, KY at a Holiday Inn Express, I found Ale 8-1 in the vending machine in the lobby for $1.50 (a really good price for a hotel). The Kroger down the street also had Ale 8-1 in glass bottle four packs. I drank the Ale 8-1 I bought the next day. It was pretty good, like a standard ginger ale with a citrus kick. It also has caffeine.


    Continuing on to OH, I saw Barq's Red Creme on one of the fountains at Kings Island (Cincinnati area) near the Banshee ride. I saw Barq's Red Creme a day earlier in one of the vending machines at Kentucky Kingdom in Louisville for $3 but never got around to buying it and was hoping OH would also have it. I was right. The Barq's Red Creme tasted more like a cream soda and less like a Big Red, so I liked it. It was like a slighty fruity cream soda, but not like a bubble gum soda. I would buy it again.

    Anyways, more on my trip soon enough. I still have the rest of OH, PA, NJ, and NYC to go to.
    Last edited by ATownAndrew; 10-10-2016 at 04:57 PM.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
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    What did you think of White Castle? I remember my first visit in 2007 and was underwhelmed.
    Whatcha gonna do mama now that the roast beef is gone?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
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    Central Coast, CA
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    Quote Originally Posted by drpep View Post
    What did you think of White Castle? I remember my first visit in 2007 and was underwhelmed.
    It was alright, but not something I would get very often. I think its something that would be better enjoyed after a night of drinking, like certain Taco Bell or Jack in the Box items. It's perfect for Vegas (which is the only one in the west). Harold and Kumar definetely overhyped the place.

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