A good friend came over for dinner recently and brought along some beverages. We didn't wind up opening them as I had made a big pitcher of sangria.
One was a bottle of Sparkling Apple Cider. Which I love. The other was a bottle of Villa Italia Italian Blood Orange Soda. Never tried it before.
Yesterday afternoon I spent playing with my Panini maker and I made a chicken asiago arugula panini. While contemplating what beverage to have with it, I remembered that the Villa Italia was still in the fridge. I am not a big citrus drinker (yes, I know, a contradiction since I love margaritas and obviously sangria!) but never having had blood orange anything I decided to give it a whirl.
Boy! Am I ever glad I did. Or not, considering that this tasty beverage may have created a monster!
I found it paired great with the bite from the asiago and arugula. I really don't like grapefruit and the lovely pinkish color reminded me of pink grapefruit sodas so I was bracing myself for a real tartness on the palette. Not so. There is a lovely balance between sweet and tart. Unlike most American sodas, the carbonation was light adding just enough bubbles to tickle the nose as they rise, carrying the sweet orange smell up with them. The taste is bright and fresh.
I think I might make a trip to the North Park farmer's market this week and see if they have any blood oranges. I'm dying to try the real fruit now.
And I have to find out where I can get another bottle of this wonderful liquid. By the end of the evening, the bottle was gone!
YOUR TURN: What's the last thing you've tried that you weren't sure you'd like but then wound up loving?