Sparkling coffee steps into the spotlight

Following the popularity of sparkling water and boozy seltzers, buzz is brewing over carbonated coffee, also known as coffee soda. These seltzer/iced coffee hybrids are gaining momentum, with companies like Stumptown launching canned versions last year. Meanwhile, smaller brands are entering the category with their own take on the fizzy brew.


Those who can’t choose between drinking juice or coffee in the morning no longer have to decide thanks to Brooklyn-based company Keepers. The startup sells citrus carbonated coffee in colorful cans that might give LaCroix some competition. The creators roast their own beans using a Japanese flash cold-brewing method and then mix the coffee with citrus juice from tangerines, limes, and lemons, as well as tangerine oil. After adding pure cane sugar, the drink is carbonated. Keepers is sold online and at select specialty shops and Whole Foods locations in NYC.


While on a ski trip, Mache Barwinski wanted to make his cold brew more refreshing and give it a boost of electrolytes, so he decided to add lemonade. This inspired him to ultimately create Upruit, which blends cold-pressed fruit juice and cold brew coffee to create a sparkling variety available in mint grapefruit, ginger hibiscus, and lemonade. The original version, lemonade, also includes organic maple syrup and Himalayan pink salt. The naturally caffeinated drink comes in colorful cans much like Keepers and is sold online and in select stores in Manhattan and Brooklyn.


Nashville-based brand Matchless Coffee Soda emerged unexpectedly. Barista Nathanael Mehrens was experimenting with coffee and decided to carbonate it and add subtle orange flavoring. His creation quickly became a hit among locals, and Mehrens later opened up his own café to serve the coffee soda on tap. Recognizing demand, Mehrens sought to scale the brand and turned to Kickstarter this past summer to raise initial funds to can and ship it nationwide. After a successful campaign, the company will be distributing Matchless domestically beginning Spring 2018.