Getting Busy With the Fizzy

One of the most popular holiday presents for foodies in recent years has been the Sodastream machine. These $100 seltzer makers are new, trendy and high-tech, but also fit nicely into the food world’s current obsession with all things organic and D.I.Y. So naturally, when I walked into my cousin’s Manhattan apartment recently and spied a Sodastream, I congratulated her on being such an up-on-it, trendy foodie.

So imagine my surprise when my other cousin, who was in town visiting from Ireland, walks into the kitchen a few minutes later and remarks, “Oh, a Sodastream – how retro!”


Irish cuz goes on to insist that every single Irish home had a Sodastream in the 1970s, “back when they were cool,” but that now the contraptions are mostly just gathering dust in people’s attics and basements. Clearly, we didn’t believe her, because these things just got popular here, and there is no way we could be decades behind Ireland in terms of food trends, is there? A few days later, she sends this:

A little Wiki research confirms that yes, Sodastreams are about as new and cool as shag carpets:

SodaStream machines were popular during the 1970s and 1980s in the UK, and are associated with nostalgia for that period.Their slogan, “Get busy with the fizzy”, started as an advertising jingle in 1979 and proved so popular that they added it to their logo. They finally dropped it in 1996 after 17 years…

Slate explains that we here in the U.S. don’t have a breaking trend after all, but merely a repackaged foreign trend:

SodaStream underwent a global relaunch in 2009. The company had redesigned its machines. It reformulated the mixes you can add to the carbonated water to make flavored soda, emphasizing the quality and healthfulness of ingredients. It introduced new models, including one that looks like a penguin.

Damn it! How did we get conned into thinking that these are the newest, coolest things around? What’s next? Finding out that molecular gastronomy was huge in Australia in the ’50s? Also, why would they drop that amazing jingle?

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  • erica November 23, 2011  

    when i went to germany in 2005 they were all over. now i am curious what other dead foreign trends will be repackaged soon for the usa… i’m hoping for Print Gocco

    happy thanksgiving you guys!

  • We’ve had them here in Sweden for quite a while too, I have one in my closet as we speak, and it’s been with me for years 🙂 Sorry, sometimes you’re not the first 😉

  • Cathal November 25, 2011  

    Yup, I grew up in Ireland too. You haven’t lived til you’ve tried sodastreamed milk…

    Irish comedian Ed Byrne even has a bit on them in his new DVD. Something along the lines of ‘oh, you’re so posh with your sodasteam, we just had to buy our Coke premade…’

  • Liza November 25, 2011  

    Wow this is fascinating!! Soda Stream Milk? WOW!

  • Liza November 25, 2011  

    This is literally blowing my mind

  • Cathal November 27, 2011  

    Well, I say you haven’t lived, but it’s more in a childish “try this, it’s a bit gross” kinda way. I’m 26 and I haven’t seen a soda stream since I was about 9.

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