An Italian soda is a soft drink made from carbonated water and simple syrup, usually flavored. Flavors can be fruit (e.g. cherry, blueberry) or modeled after the flavors of desserts, spices, or other beverages (e.g. amaretto, chai, chocolate). Some vendors add cream to the recipe as well. This variation is called a French Soda or cremosa in certain regions and Italian Soda refers to the non-cream beverage.
Despite its name, Italian soda originated in the USA. One claimant to the introduction and increased popularity of Italian sodas is Torani: Rinaldo and Ezilda Torre brought recipes for flavored syrups from Lucca, Italy and in 1925 introduced what become known as an Italian soda to the North Beach neighborhood of San Francisco, California. The Italian American association with Italian sodas has been reinforced by various ready-made brands of Italian sodas, such as the 2005 creation of Romano's Italian Soda Company (named after the Italian American grandfather of the company's founder) and the 2007 introduction of "The Sopranos Old Fashioned Italian Sodas" which come in three flavors: limoncello, amaretto, and Chianti.
An example of an alternative to Italian soda that is really from Italy is the chinotto, a carbonated drink made from the juice of a native Italian citrus fruit called the myrtle-leaved orange or myrtifolia.
- "Top 4 Ways to Experience Authentic Italian Cuisine in Boston". Le Cordon Bleu. October 18, 2009. Retrieved 2012-02-08.
- "Products". Torani. Retrieved 2010-02-19.
- "Our Story". Torani. Retrieved 2010-02-19.
- "Romano's History". Romano's Italian Soda Company. Retrieved 2010-02-19.
- "New Sopranos-Branded Soda To Debut". QSR Magazine. April 30, 2007. Retrieved 2010-02-19.[dead link]
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