Caffiend: Black-Eyed Duce

The Duce, a new shopping and dining compound in Central Phoenix, offers everything from retro cocktails in the bar area to vintage French military fatigues in the shopping center. But one of the coolest components of this hub is a soda stand run by Jeff Guarino, owner of Pop the Soda Shop in Scottsdale. This past Sunday, Guarino not only gave us an education in German sodas and espresso cola, but also knocked our socks off with a drink called the Black-Eyed Duce.

The Black-Eyed Duce is a shot of espresso in cola, with cream added. Because he's a true soda jerk, Guarino used soda from the fountain hose. He also took care to perfectly blend the espresso and coke. When he handed us our Black-Eyed Duce's, we delighted at the smooth, crisp flavor (it was like a delicious but subtle coffee soda), and quickly chugged the tasty concoction.

Guarino says he also makes a Black-Eyed Duce Squared, which is a Black-Eyed Duce with an energy drink base (Taurine, Guarana, B Vitamins, etc.) added. That sounds like a great wake-up drink for the future, but the regular Black-Eyed Duce was all we could handle for one day. After chugging it down, we were almost bouncing off the walls for a solid two hours, cleaning, cooking, and Internet shopping. What a great way to start one's day. 

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