Expat Learnings

Things I’ve learned as an American expat in the UKoGBaNI #16

Carbonated beverages

Pop (aka fountain drink) machines basically don’t exist.

First, I hail from the northern United States, so fountain drinks are known as “pop”.

There are two restaurants in the UK that I know of which have self-serve pop machines: Subway and Nandos. These two restaurants are havens for hangover days when I just want an “on-tap Coke”. Seemingly every other restaurant serves bottles or cans of pop. Beverage guns (found in American bars and restaurants) are also really, really rare. Want a gin and tonic? The tonic will be poured out of a single-serving bottle, not out of a beverage gun. Americans and their guns…

Below is a pop machine in the US. It’s like something out of the future. The first time I encountered this being, I wasn’t sure what to do and had to call in the help of my siblings. This machine can make approximately 1,600,000 flavors of pop.

Below is a pop machine at the Maidenhead Subway. This machine can make four flavours of pop because no one in the UK would ever fathom mixing flavours together. (Do you see what I did there with flavor v. flavour?)

For the next learning in my Expat Learnings mini series, go here. Alternatively, go here to read this mini-series from the beginning.

3 comments on “Things I’ve learned as an American expat in the UKoGBaNI #16

  1. Have you figured out why we have dispensers in the US but not UK? All I have ever heard is it is super cheap out of the fountain, wonder why UK wouldn’t want to use? I wonder if it has to do with stricter food laws?

    • I have not figured out why and I’m not sure I ever will. I think it’s probably a combination of lack of space, food laws and people being old school. I must admit, I enjoy getting served a glass bottle of Coke. My mom always said Coke out of a glass bottle tasted different and she was right.

  2. That doesn’t surprise me that it would taste better/different. I have always said mountain dew out of a can tastes better than out of a bottle. Although I can’t really remember the last time I had one…

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