In many ways the 60s were a sparkling decade.  Everything became more effervescent and fun.  That’s what it was like in Italy; it was a time to fizz up your life.  Every child remembers products which would turn a flat drink into a glass of sparkling water: Idrolitina and Frizzina.

 

Idrolitina vintage poster | sparkling water

Idrolitina Poster

 

Using these carbonated powders wasn’t easy.  In fact, you had to do everything with perfect timing or instead of making sparkling water you would make something really disgusting. These were the steps:

  • Take the kind of old-style soda bottle you don’t see around anymore (with a pressure stopper and an orange gasket)
  • Fill it with tap water.
  • Quickly pour the Idrolitina powder in and close the stopper.
  • If you were able to do the last step correctly, you can now shake the bottle up and down.
  • Wait for the white foam to become water again.
  • It’s ready to drink!

It was like magic.  In the end the water was sparkling and a bit salty (due to the formation of sodium ions).  Some brands actually included two packets and you had to put the first one in, wait and then pour the other one.

 

 

Yellow Idrolitina sticker | Powder to make sparkling water

An old Idrolitina label

 

The use of these powders wasn’t limited to water, sometimes they were even poured into wine. Of course we are not talking about those expensive wines that come from the wine shop, but about wines that Italians made themselves in their own vineyard.  Another thing you could do with the carbonated powder was add some orange flavor to make orange soda.

 

Frizzina, a direct competitor of Idrolitina | sparkling water

DRINK JOY DRINK HEALTHY ... AT MEALTIME AND OUTSIDE YOUR MEALS! | A vintage ad for Frizzina.

Frizzina promotion ad | sparkling water

Win MILLIONS to spend in one day with Frizzina! It will be your LUCKY DAY! | A Frizzina ad announcing a promotional contest.

 

Idrolitina, Frizzina, Cristallina and Idriz, all of them were not merely fun products, but also an important ingredient that made eating and drinking a social event.  So if you want to salute the way Italians added a little bit of fizz to their lives, just remember to drink up!

 

idrolitina advertisement | sparkling water

... if only I had kept drinking IDROLITINA I would still be a government minister ... As long as I drink IDROLITINA I can still return to power ... I owe the joy of being president to IDROLITINA ... if I drink IDROLITINA I could become a government minister (?!) | An Idrolitina ad that pokes fun at politicians

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