Which Regional Soda Is the Best Regional Soda? You Decide!

UPDATE: This round is closed, please vote in the finals.

If we’ve learned anything as professional taste testers and food journalists here at Sporked, it’s that people have very strong opinions about soda. They’re passionate about Dr Pepper. Mad about Mtn Dew. But loyalties run even deeper when it comes to regional sodas, those hometown favorites you grew up on that people in less fortunate regions of the U.S. might be wholly unfamiliar with. But what’s the best regional soda of them all? Well, we suspect you’ll have a lot of opinions about that. 

Welcome to the Burp Bracket, your chance to weigh in on the best regional sodas. The contenders: Boylan Black Cherry representing the Mid-Atlantic, Faygo Rock & Rye representing the Midwest, Cheerwine representing the Southeast, Shasta Tiki Punch representing the West, Big Red representing the Southwest, Dr. Brown’s Cream Soda representing the Northeast, Jones Cream Soda representing the Northwest, and, last but not least, Izze Sparkling Blackberry representing the Mountain region. 

To select a soda for each region, we put our heads together and picked the most iconic brands. If the brand makes sodas in more than one flavor, we asked our followers on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram to help us pick the best flavor of them all. So if Faygo Rock & Rye is not the best flavor of Faygo in your opinion, take it up with them!

This week, it’s round one. Choose a winner of each match-up—based either on your regional loyalties or your honest opinions—and then come back next week to find out which sodas are moving on to the next round, and vote again. The round one match-ups are as follows:

Boylan Black Cherry vs. Faygo Rock & Rye

Cheerwine vs. Shasta Tiki Punch

Big Red vs. Dr. Brown’s Cream Soda

Jones Cream Soda vs. Izze Sparkling Blackberry

After four rounds, we’ll have a winner decided by you and one decided by the Sporked team, too. Rhett & Link already weighed in on Good Mythical MORE! Welcome to Sporked’s Burp Bracket. Let the soda-off commence! Voting for this round is open now and ends on Thursday, March 21 at 3 p.m. PST.

By submitting your email address to participate in the 2024 Burp Bracket, you are signing up to receive Sporked‘s bi-weekly email newsletter, as well as future emails regarding the Burp Bracket. Upon receiving your first email, you can unsubscribe by clicking “Unsubscribe” at the bottom.

By submitting your email address to participate in the 2024 Burp Bracket, you are signing up to receive Sporked‘s bi-weekly email newsletter, as well as future emails regarding the Burp Bracket. Upon receiving your first email, you can unsubscribe by clicking “Unsubscribe” at the bottom.


About the Author

Sporked Staff

The Sporked Staff tastes everything and anything. They are obsessive about groceries and finding the best of any type of food or drink, from frozen fried shrimp to Dijon mustard to gummy candy. And they're always on a hunt for the best new products. When they aren't eating professionally, they're eating recreationally. And often they're browsing grocery store aisles, just for fun.

Thoughts? Questions? Complete disagreement? Leave a comment!

Your thoughts.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • Ale 8 not being on this list nullifies the entire thing. Pass.

    Reply
  • As a life long resident of the Midwest I sincerely say wth is Faygo?

    Reply
  • I’m not sure this page loaded right for me as I only had access to the round one form which was closed. Mostly I just wanted to comment and say I don’t think Big Red is a Southwest thing. It’s a southern Indiana / northern Kentucky thing.
    https://www.grocery.com/big-red-soda/#:~:text=Originally%20sold%20exclusively%20around%20Louisville,popular%20in%20Southern%20United%20States.
    I also didn’t realize Jones cream soda was regional because it’s always been a thing in Indiana as far as I’ve known.
    Maybe these things just aren’t sold in California 😉
    Fwiw, I’ve only seen Moxie sold in Maine and it’s gross.

    Reply
    • Hi Lacy! You can vote int he finals here: https://sporked.com/article/sporked-burp-bracket-finals/

      Reply
    • Big Red is from Texas, so certainly not an Indiana or Kentucky thing. I’ll agree it shouldn’t have been included in SW since most of us Texans would never call ourselves that or identify with that region. Big Red is a Texas icon and I’m a little offended that you tried to ascribe it to another region!

      Also, jones is definitely sold in California. Sounds like you need to travel some more around the country!

      Reply
      • It’s actually both. Big Red was initially only sold in Texas and in the Louisville metro area. That said, it is definitively more of a cultural staple in southern Indiana (north of Louisville). Gas stations carry full display cases of it and you can even find it at every single concession stand for sporting events. Its part of life there.

  • Have to get Dr Enuf. Johnson City, TN. You can get them from Cracker Barrel’s (unfortunately) outside the Tri Cities.

    Reply
  • Terrible. I live in South East and have never tasted Cheer wine. Big Shot is the best regional soda around New Orleans area by far

    Reply
  • Faygo and Shasta are OUT for me. Adding artificial sweeteners to a non diet drink (and not labeling them as diet or light) is a huge turnoff.

    Reply
  • I don’t think I’ve ever seen someone drinking a Towne Club Soda but i see it for sale around Detroit.

    Reply
  • Hoosier.

    Reply
  • NC Native, I think Cheerwine tops this round. I will say though, the Boylan black cherry isn’t bad, I spotted a bottle at the Dollar Tree here locally last night and just cracked it open earlier, not bad indeed. Cheerwine is still goated.

    Reply
  • Boylan all the way bb

    Reply
  • Big Red is by far the superior brand.

    Reply
  • No Ale 8? No Nehi? No Vernors Ginger Ale? No RC Cola? And Big Red ONLY works when you drink it while eating White Castle’s!

    Reply
  • Sprecher, Black Bear, or Jolly Good are all far superior mid-west soda brands than faygo. just because a they have a very verbal unique fan base doesn’t make them the best

    Reply
  • I’m gonna marry dr.pepper.

    Reply
  • No Ale 8 or Nehi??? Kentucky is sad.

    Reply
    • Nehi really is the underdog of amazing soda

      Reply
  • Imagine doing this and not having a Polar soda for the Northeast. This is why Sporked is so terrible.

    Reply
    • Dr Brown is great, what are you talking about. And I love Polar.

      Reply
      • Definitely Polar – great Seltzers too. The most regional soda in the Northeast is probably Moxie.

  • I was really hoping Cactus Cooler would be on here! 🙁

    Reply
  • Boylan and Cheerwine are great. My favorite soda at the moment though is Nichol Kola. Something I like to do with Cheerwine is put it in the freezer for about 10 minutes. Just long enough to have ice crystals floating around.

    Reply
  • I can’t do regular soda anymore now that Olipop ships everywhere. Not exactly regional beyond Southern California but impressive flavor profiles and super low sugar!

    Reply
    • Olipoop is terrible

      Reply
    • Olipoop is terrible

      Reply
  • I was hoping to see Moxie, I guess pretty much Maine only so might not be “regional”

    Reply
  • Hello I have a question why is Vernors not on here ??

    Reply
  • DON’T DISRESPECT STEWARTS LIKE THAT! CREAM SODA AND BLACK CHERRY ARE UNMATCHED! AHHHH! P.S. remember that mad tv sketch about stewart? LOOK WHAT I CAN DO!

    Reply
  • I cannot participate in a regional soda tournament without Sprecher’s

    Reply
    • yes

      Reply
  • I know you can’t please everyone – I promise, I know! – but the lack of Cactus Cooler here.

    Reply
    • agreed

      Reply
  • I can’t believe Faygo Rock and Rye beat out Red Pop which is the favorite flavor of most the kids in my family. My preference is Orange but I’m a weirdo. Regardless, my two favorites were Boylans and Izze and it is a toss-up for me. I wouldn’t throw either out of bed.

    Reply
  • I gotta go Big Red all the way.

    Reply