Hi! I’m Jane St. Claire and SavorCalifornia.com is my way of letting the whole world know about the fantastic foods and beverages being made in California. On this video blog our group of foodies are going a step further to show you how to use them. Start with the best, and it gets even better!

Ice Cream Sodas

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There’s no such thing as too much ice cream! One of my favorite memories was my Grandfather making us Black Cows (for the uninitiated, that’s a root beer float with vanilla ice cream).

So we decided to make ice cream sodas California style, with spectacular combinations that you may not have tried before. In Deborah Geitner’s back yard in Healdsburg, California, Deborah, Amy and I did three rounds with different ice creams, sorbets and sodas. (Tough work, but somebody’s got to do it…!)

For the first round we used two of the sodas from Vignette Wine Country Soda, Pinot Noir and Rosé, along with three flavors of Agave Dream ice cream. Vignette Wine Country Soda is made with wine grape juice, but has no alcohol, and their fresh, dry taste makes them perfect with food for those who want a non-alcoholic beverage. Since Agave Dream Ice Cream is sweetened with agave syrup, rather than sugar, it has a lower glycemic index than conventional ice cream. It’s also gluten-free.

Deborah and I tried the Vignette Pinot Noir; she used Agave Dream Strawberry ice cream with hers, and I used Vanilla. Amy tried the Rosé soda with Pomegranate Açai Sorbet. In the sunlight the sodas really sparkled, and when the ice cream was added the bubbles were a beautiful pink color. The drinks looked so appetizing. Delicious and very refreshing!

The second round was deliciously complicated. We made sodas using flavored syrups from Sonoma Syrup Co., and topped them off with ice creams from both Silver Moon Desserts and Agave Dream.

Made from fresh California fruit, the simple syrups from Sonoma Syrup can be used in cooking, baking, cocktails, and of course, sodas. We made our sodas using their Lime, Lavender, Mint, and Meyer Lemon syrups. The sodas were so tasty, even before we added the ice cream.

Silver Moon makes extraordinary ice creams and sorbets that are infused with alcoholic beverages. Even the names of the flavors sound like a party.

Deborah made two sodas using the mint Sonoma Syrup. She added Agave Dream Chocolate ice cream to one and Cappuccino to the other. She proclaimed the mint-cappuccino combination ”divine.”

Amy made two sodas also, using Lime syrup and Mint syrup. She added Silver Moon’s Mojito Ice to both. She just couldn’t decide which she liked better.

For my first soda I used Silver Moon’s Lavender Limoncello sorbet with the soda made with Sonoma Syrup’s Meyer Lemon. For my second one I combined Agave Dream Lavender ice cream with the Lavender soda. Both were yummy combinations, and the lavender one had a lovely aroma.

Round number three featured Fentimans “botanical brewed sodas.” These are richly flavored, old-fashioned style sodas. Besides the Ginger Beer, each of their other sodas also has a touch of ginger. Crushed ginger is combined with the beverages in the 7-day brewing and fermentation process.

Deborah started with Fentiman’s Mandarin & Seville Orange Jigger and added Silver Moon’s Orange Creamsicle ice cream – a twist on a classic. I tried the same soda and added Silver Moon’s Bourbon Vanilla Bean ice cream. Whew! Amy decided to drink her Fentiman’s soda straight up.

For her final soda, Deborah used Fentiman’s Ginger Beer and Silver Moon’s Bourbon Vanilla Ice Cream. This Ginger Beer is very light in color, so the total effect was creamy deliciousness.

I added Bourbon Vanilla Bean ice cream to Dandelion & Burdock soda. Wow! This soda flavor was introduced to me by Fentiman’s, and I am now a big fan. It makes an outstanding ice cream soda with Silver Moon’s Bourbon Vanilla Bean. I shared it with Deborah, and she thought she might be able to get away with drinking the whole thing.

This was our idea of a good day! And the three of us agreed that this would make a wonderful party theme.

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