Best House-made Sodas

Saul's Restaurant and Delicatessen

Although some customers like to kvetch about the modest size of their pastrami sandwiches, all quibbles are forgiven with a first sip of Saul's homemade soda. The deli mixes the extracts in-house and sweetens each flavor with cane sugar instead of corn syrup. Blueberry soda, a vile proposition when made with artificial ingredients, is transformed into something — dare we say it — sophisticated at Saul's: blush-colored, subtly sweet, and laced with actual chunks of fresh fruit. Likewise, their cream soda incorporates real vanilla for a delicate result that's vastly preferable to the usual cloying sweetness of commercial recipes. The lineup changes with the seasons, so keep a lookout for Meyer lemon, blood orange, and strawberry, and don't be afraid to venture into unknown territory. Celery soda may sound scary if you're not already a Cel-Ray fanatic, but it's shockingly good, and the cardamom flavor is no more exotic than root beer or ginger ale (Saul's makes that, too), with a spicy zing that you won't taste in supermarket brands. For that final soda-fountain flourish, retro cardboard straws add a certain soggy charm. Watch your back, Dr. Brown.
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