Frequently Asked Questions
Here are a few of the questions we get asked all the time. If you have an unfrequently asked question, no problem - you can ask us anything at the bottom of the page.
Do Soda Brewery™ sodas contain alcohol?
The short answer is no - it's brewed like a beer, but Soda Brewery is a non-alcoholic beverage. The slightly longer answer is that it contains a minuscule amount of alcohol (0.03%) created during the brewing process. This amount of alcohol could never get anybody intoxicated and is completely safe for children and pregnant people.
Where is Soda Brewery™ made?
All our sodas are made here in New Zealand, and are brewed and bottled in Manawatu and Tauranga.
Who created the sodas?
We (Chris and James) created and formulated all of our sodas. We worked with brewing experts to create the brewing recipe, and The Foodbowl to refine the formulation and flavour.
How did you come up with the idea?
We’ve been lifelong fans of sodas. Like most kiwis, we grew up loving soft drinks, and even today the fridge in our office has always been packed with different sodas. But also like most kiwis, over the past few years we’ve become aware of just how sugary these drinks are – and the impact that too much sugar has on our health. Having worked with beer companies a lot in the past, we’d learned how the brewing process converts sugar into much more complex flavour. And we had this epiphany – what if you could use the magic of brewing to create a soda that had just as much flavour, with far less sugar?
How is the taste of a brewed soda different to a soft drink?
The brewing process creates two key differences.
Firstly, a more complex and interesting flavour. When you simply mix together fruit juice and sugar, the taste can be delicious, but it’s always pretty one-dimensional. The characteristics of the barley and hops combine with our natural juices to create a flavour that has a lot more depth and dimension to it.
Secondly, a fuller ‘mouthfeel’. The way a drink feels in your mouth is a key part of how taste is experienced. A thinner feeling drink needs more sugar to avoid seeming watery. Our brewing process creates a naturally fuller, richer sensation in the mouth.
Are the ingredients natural?
Yes, all our ingredients are 100% natural. We use no artificial sweeteners and no preservatives.
Where do the ingredients come from?
Most of what’s in our bottles comes from here in New Zealand, but we’ve also found great natural ingredients from around the world to perfect the flavour of our sodas.
Can you explain the brewing process and how it leads to more flavour with less sugar?
The process is really similar to brewing a beer. We start with four natural ingredients – barley, water, hops and yeast, and these are brewed and fermented to create a base ingredient with the right flavour characteristics.
One big difference is that we use a cold contact fermentation process which allows us to slow the fermentation and avoid producing alcohol - but still have all the flavour.
That base ingredient is then combined with natural fruit juices, carbonated water, natural flavours and just a little sugar in batching vessels, before being bottled and pasteurised. This pasteurisation allows us to forego the use of preservatives and deliver a 100% natural and preservative-free soda.
Who are Chris and James?
Chris Paykel and James Hurman are soda enthusiasts and the co-founders of Soda Brewery™.
Chris and James are both from Auckland and work together at their company Previously Unavailable, which specialises in the creation of innovative new products and businesses.
Chris has been a product designer, management consultant and innovation specialist. An engineer by trade, Chris has led the development of the Soda Brewery™ product and manufacturing.
James has been an advertising strategist, author and innovation specialist. A marketer by trade, James has led the development of the Soda Brewery™ brand.
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