On-demand carbonated drinks… for one? While at-home carbonation machines have been around for years, Drinkmate’s latest product, Instafizz, is the first I’ve seen that carbonates on a single-serving basis, right in the container you drink it from.
The device looks largely like a typical aluminum water bottle, albeit with a larger than normal lid and a curiously oversized base. The base is where the magic happens. Just fill the container (up to the fill line, a couple inches down from the top) with water or anything else and seal it up. Rotate the base to the left and a small portal is revealed. Pop in a small CO2 canister, then rotate back to the right. Pssssssssssssssssss, carbonation is delivered directly into the bottle, bubbling into your beverage of choice. A quick shake or swirl and 30 seconds later, you’ve got a freshly carbonated drink.
To be sure, it’s a bit of a gimmick. If you need a single-serving size sparkling water, a canned version will be more efficient, easier to carry, and cheaper — CO2 cartridges aren’t cheap; these, 8 grams in size, run $29 for a 50-pack. But what’s more interesting is the prospect of using the Instafizz to make carbonated cocktails without using sparkling water. Honestly, there’s nothing you can’t carbonate — want a sparkling negroni? go for it! — and here the single-serve size works in your favor, since you don’t have to waste a large amount of expensive booze if you’re simply experimenting.
Other drawbacks? The impact of the fizz injection is moderate at best; if you’re used to the bracing bubbles of a Topo Chico or Perrier, you’ll need to temper your expectations. The device isn’t the most handsome, and the aluminum walls get quite cold after you blast your beverage with CO2. A silicone sleeve is included in the kit (along with 10 CO2 cartridges) for use if you plan to drink out of it directly. There’s a slight learning curve to the device — particularly removing an old cartridge — so keep the helpful instruction booklet handy while you get the hang of things.
All told, Instafizz isn’t something I’ll probably use regularly (and I certainly wouldn’t use it for water), but when the mood strikes to bubble something up, it’s a handy device to have on hand for novelties and experimentation.
B+ / $70 [BUY IT NOW FROM AMAZON]