Fill ‘Er Up
The beautiful thing about being on a journey that you know is first and foremost, a learning experience is that you just have to keep learning. After reading, attempting, adjusting, consulting experts and just good old fashioned trial and error, it happened. The can filled with sweet Soda Joy and did NOT spray out the top of the can all over me, the bench, the filler, the floor and just about anywhere else it could fly to.
This is of course a milestone, the last step in the process of creating a repeatable process that didn’t end in failure. The can filled and stopped. While I should be ecstatic, and of course I am. I learned two valuable lessons, one is sampling every sample can after it is filled will quickly catch up to you as it’s still 10% alcohol by volume and as I already knew, a little goes a long way and two is that getting the process right doesn’t mean the product is right. I tasted what should have been a delightful can of Cucumber Mint and immediately thought to myself “this sucks”.
The flavor profile is completely off and it tasted like the swill that my co-packer had tried to pawn off on me. This is the way. Now that the process is tuned and repeatable, the formulas need to be adjusted to account for the process. While mixing neutral carbonated water with vodka and flavors at the ratios I had might have worked on a small scale, clearly work needed to be done to do it on an albeit slightly larger scale. Back to work.