p.o.l "Huellventure"­ to Galco's Soda Pop Stop for Soda Pop Tasting & Lunch!

Come cool off with us for a fun and refreshing Soda Pop Tasting with the King of Pop, John Nese, owner of GALCO'S SODA POP STOP (as seen on Visiting with Huell Howser #800 (2000) & #1602 (2008)

Date: Sunday, June 30, 2013

Time: Soda Pop Tasting 11:00 am then lunch at 12:00 pm

Parking: Free at Galco's Parking Lot or free street parking if the lot is full
Cost: Pop Tasting is FREE

Lunch: budget $5-$15  (Galco's Deli can make an assortment of sandwiches such as meatball, French dip, hot turkey, hot pastrami but they're most famous for their "Blockbuster" Footlong Sub which boxing legend, Rocky Marciano nicknamed after eating the sandwich. 8" sandwiches start around $4.50; footlongs $9.00, plus there are chips, candies and of course lots of soda flavors to choose from!)

We've arranged to have a fun, private soda pop tasting with owner, John Nese, who will surprise us with a variety of pop flavors from small, independent bottlers. Galco's was established in 1897 and has been family-owned and operated ever since. They offer over 750 different soda pops from bottlers all across the country and around the world. From Pennsylvania Punch to Australian Gingerbeer to a variety of Root Beers, Black Cherries, Creams and Sarsaparillas to different flavors made from cucumber, lavender and rose petals. And of course, classics like Bubble Up, Cheerwine, Crush and Faygo. John knows the history behind every bottle and brand he sells and will gladly answer questions and share any facts he can.  This is a true, family-run business and the fact that it's survived for well over 100 years is a testament to the passion and love John and his family brings to the business.

After the tasting, we will place our lunch order (again, we recommend trying Galco's famous "Blockbuster" sandwich but there are other sandwich selections available to choose from) then browse around the store and feel free to take home a variety of soda pop flavors (you can purchase individual bottles - don't have to get a six pack of the same flavor!) for friends and family to try or stock up for your Fourth of July bbq!  And don't forget to check out Galco's famous old time candies section loaded with your favorites from around the country!

We will eat lunch on the private back patio where John will then share a few personal memories and stories of Huell who would often frequent his store over the years.  This is going to be a fun way to spend a Sunday morning and a great way to support a local, family-owned business. We hope to see you there!


Galco's began as a small, Italian grocery store in Los Angeles, California. It has been family-owned and operated for over one-hundred and sixteen years. Although the focus of the store has changed to soda pop and beer from around the world, they still maintain their Italian deli and continue to make their famous "Blockbuster" sandwiches fresh daily.

The passion for soda began when John F. Nese was a child. His father's best friend owned a soda pop bottling plant where John loved to visit in the 1950's. In 1995 John began increasing his assortment of sodas not only out of love, but also as a protest to some of the larger soda companies that were not offering him the same prices as his larger competitors. He figured why not support other small businesses such as his own?

It took a few years, but the idea finally caught on! People started journeying from far away places to get a look at the store with over 750 different sodas. Galco's then appeared on PBS's "Visiting with Huell Howser" (not once but twice!), the Food Channel's "Unwrapped" series and German Television to name a few. They have also appeared in Sunset Magazine, The Los Angeles Times, The LA Weekly, The Tokyo Times and various other newspaper features. He has also been a guest on the BBC and the Canadian Broadcasting System. John's love of history and trivia extends to his sodas. People who visit the retail store are impressed with his ability to share an interesting fact about any soda of interest.

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  • Stacey

    Thank you both so much, I've wanted to go to Galco's for a long time. Very fun! And I'm loving the rose petal soda!

    1 · July 1, 2013

  • roger b.

    good meetup! thanks rob and jen! good job.

    July 1, 2013

  • Cynthia

    It was a wonderful adventure. I drive by the store twice a week and have never ventured in. It will be a regular stop now -- it will take a long time to sample all the sodas!

    2 · July 1, 2013

    • Rob & J.

      that's what we like to hear! And I'm sure John will appreciate your future business too. Thanks again for coming!

      July 1, 2013

  • Nancy J

    Sorry, have to cancel...next time!

    June 26, 2013

    • Rob & J.

      Sorry you missed this one Nancy - hope all's well - see you soon!

      July 1, 2013

  • Marie D.

    so sorry to miss this one but looking forward to others!

    June 26, 2013

    • Rob & J.

      Sorry you missed this one Marie - hope all's well - see you soon!

      July 1, 2013

  • Deborah Y.

    Sorry, but I'm going to have to cancel

    June 29, 2013

    • Rob & J.

      Sorry you missed this one Deborah - hope all's well - see you soon!

      July 1, 2013

  • Lorraine Soto A.

    Tasting was a fun time.....

    1 · June 30, 2013

  • Rob & J.

    We had a wonderful time today on our p.o.l Huellventure to Galco's Soda Pop Stop in Highland Park - 45 p.o.l's came for a fun soda pop tasting with owner and 'King of Pop', John Nese! John shared a little history of his family-owned and operated business and gave us a terrific tasting of three different flavor pops - Mr Cucumber, Lemmy Sparkling Lemonade (made with real lemon juice) and White Rose Rootbeer (a distinct Rootbeer specially crafted for Galco's!). Everyone stocked up on soda pops and old time candies and we all had lunch (many had Galco's famous Blockbuster sandwich of course!) and some chocolate "Huell at Galco's" Cake from fellow p.o.l. Alex. Hope you all had as much fun as we did. Be sure to visit Galco's at 5702 York Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90042 and think about attending Galco's 3rd Annual Summer Soda Tasting on July 28 which will benefit the Friends of the Southwest Museum Coalition. Thank you all again for coming - see you on the next p.o.l adventure!

    1 · June 30, 2013

  • Randy

    They keep getting better and better!! Had a wonderful time....
    Thank you Rob and Jen....

    1 · June 30, 2013

  • Karen

    I don't know about eating on the patio. It's supposed to be 100. Do they have an ac area to eat at?

    June 29, 2013

    • Rob & J.

      Hi Karen - they have a very small indoor area - with one table - not really set up for indoor lunch but there is a place to sit should you require. The patio seating does have umbrellas for shade. Weather says high of only 84 tomorrow for Highland Park so hopefully won't be too bad between doing the tasting then going inside to order lunch, walk around, shop etc.

      1 · June 29, 2013

  • Karen

    My gues won't be able to make it. I don't know how to change it to 0 guests.

    June 29, 2013

  • donna n.

    I'm excited. I plan to bring my husband also. Let me know if this is not okay. Thanks guys for organizing such fun outings

    June 14, 2013

    • donna n.

      When I rsvp'd I did not see the usual box to add a guest. He is planning on coming though. I will try again to add him officially.

      June 26, 2013

    • donna n.

      Okay, I was able to add him. We are really looking forward to it;)

      June 26, 2013

  • Raymond S.

    Can't wait to go.

    1 · June 21, 2013

  • Joey M.

    Looking forward to a Soda Pop adventure!

    1 · June 19, 2013

  • rick

    Looking forward to it !

    June 19, 2013

  • Frankie R.

    I'm so excited if another event. I always have fun.

    1 · June 17, 2013

  • David C.

    this will be fun!

    June 17, 2013

  • Nancy G

    Sounds fun, but can't make it this time.

    June 15, 2013

  • Marie D.

    think it will be just me

    June 14, 2013

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