New Jersey’s famous secret drink
It's not a secret if you live in Burlington County, especially on the eastern side near the Delaware River. The beverage is called Drink Atoast, Boost or Take-A-Boost, depending on your family's preference.
This "Boost" is not to be confused with the energy/vitamin supplement for seniors that came out about 20 years ago. This drink has been around for over a hundred years.
There are many families who swear by the stuff and have it stocked in the fridge or pantry year-round. There are others that hate the stuff.
I was introduced to Boost when I was about 11 years old visiting some relatives of a friend on my block in South Philly. His mom took us on two buses (not many women in the city drove back then) and we finally made it to Riverside, New Jersey.
Riverside is the home of Boost, and it has always surprised me that it still survives but is only know VERY locally in the Burlington County area. Sure, it can be shipped all over the country and the world, and locals who've moved out of town get it sent to them all the time. But it's still just a local phenomenon.
It was developed by a local pharmacist named Benjamin Faunce. He was looking for something to help his son who was often ill and came up with the formula that has been patented since 1913.
The company employs about ten people, and the business survives to this day, although in a very small corner of our world.
You will see big red and white signs in pizza shops, deli's, restaurants, gas stations and convenient stores in many parts of Burlington County.
If you didn't grow up with it, you may find the taste a bit odd, but I can't go a summer without it.
Boost comes in a syrup, and you mix it with four parts water. Some places sell it in slushy form, and you can get a brain freeze from sucking it down so fast.
Try it and see what you think ... if you can find it!
The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Dennis Malloy. Any opinions expressed are Dennis Malloy's own.