Seltzer water is known as sparkling water, soda water, and mineral water. Order it in a diner and it’s two cents plain. That’s because during the Great Depression of the 1930s, that soda fountain order cost just two cents. Back then, you’d pay a nickel for a chocolate soda and a dime for a glass of chocolate milk. But big spenders shelled out a quarter for the New York classic drink – the Egg Cream.
The funny thing about the Egg Cream is that this unique old-school soda fountain contains no egg and no cream. Instead there are just three simple ingredients: seltzer, milk, and a unique chocolate syrup, Fox’s U-bet, an iconic New York product that has been made in Brooklyn since 1900.
Egg Creams were originally street food. Imagine you’re on your way to work or the store, and you pause at one of the numerous New York newsstands for a paper or magazine. You’re parched, so you order an Egg Cream. The clerk pours milk in a glass, spritzes in some seltzer, then agitates the mixture with a spoon. Then they squeeze in a shot of Fox’s U-bet chocolate syrup and whisk it until it’s frothy. Typically, you’d just chug it down and go happily along your merry way.
We still make Egg Creams with those three simple ingredients here at Max & Louie’s. One hundred twenty years later the original recipe is still perfect, and so is Fox’s U-Bet syrup.
One reason U-Bet syrup remains popular today is that, unlike other chocolate syrups, it’s made with real cocoa. Plus, it’s got a little dried milk in it too, which adds to the frothiness of an Egg Cream.
On top of the great taste, Egg Creams are near and dear to my heart. My grandfather Abie was a deliveryman for seltzer and Fox’s U-bet. As a young boy I often went on his route with him in Brooklyn. It was magical, and although I remember the fun I had fondly, the experience also taught me the value of hard work.
We also hand-mix a wide variety of other traditional soda fountain treats here at Max & Louie’s, and serve specialty drinks in our full bar that you won’t find anywhere else in San Antonio. In fact we’re the first and only place in San Antonio to serve cocktails made with the iconic Dr. Brown’s Sodas – a brand that began in 1869 – also in Brooklyn.
These delicious cocktails shake up your tastebuds using familiar combinations containing the rich flavors of Dr. Brown’s.
- We pair cream soda with orange vodka and cream for a drink that tastes like a creamsicle.
- We combine Treaty Oak Red Handed Bourbon with Dr. Brown’s black cherry soda for a bourbon cocktail any urban cowboy will love.
- And you just have to try the out-of-the-box Dr. Brown’s Cel-Ray soda paired with the botanicals of Waterloo Gin. It’s really delicious. Heck, they’re ALL really delicious!
We also serve fun drinks designed for the kid lingering inside every adult. We tested our mad soda fountain skills to create boozy milkshakes we call Shickered Shakes, with flavors that remind you of cinnamon toast, strawberry cheesecake, and a chocolate-coconut candy bar. Of course, all of our Shickered Shakes are handmade to order.
Have an idea for your own version of adult milkshake? Our bar and soda fountain crews love to be creative, so let them know what flavors you’re craving and watch them bring your dreams to life.
Everything we serve here at Max & Louie’s New York Diner has a backstory and a place in our heart. I hope you’ll come in soon and try something new, something nostalgic, or something steeped in tradition.
And while you’re here, ask for me and let me know what you thought of this blog and the video below. I’ll see you soon.