If you consider yourself a sparkling water aficionado who's constantly going through cans and bottles that cost an arm and a leg, then it might be time to invest in a good old soda maker!
Not only will you be saving tons of money, but you'll also be reducing plastic bottle usage and helping the environment.
When I heard about the Aarke Carbonator Pro, a machine famed for its exceptional quality and design, I couldn't wait to put it to the test and make my own sparkling water at home.
So, is this machine really worth the hype? Let's find out!
Aarke Carbonator Pro General Features
The Carbonator Pro, Aarke's first product in 4 years, is widely regarded as one of the best soda-making machines in the sparkling water market, if not the best.
At first glance, I could've sworn this thing came straight from the Met. The Carbonator Pro boasts a sleek, elegant, and modern look that’s available in both silver stainless steel, sand and matte black.
What Does It Come With?
The machine is essentially one large piece, coupled with a sturdy 27-ounce glass bottle that has a metal lid. I was happy to learn that the featured glass bottle can simply be thrown in the dishwasher without thinking twice.
Aarke's Carbonator Pro comes in two kits: a standard carbonator kit that contains a glass bottle and another kit that includes the glass bottle plus a CO2 cylinder.
Mind you, the cylinder is necessary to operate the machine, so you're going to have to make that additional purchase if you buy the standard kit. I mean, a product with that price tag leaving out a vital item feels pretty stingy, if you ask me.
Nevertheless, a fun thing about the Carbonator Pro is that it's compatible with standard CO2 cylinders from most major brands.
So, if for whatever reason you can't seem to find the Aarke cylinder online, you could simply swap it for a cylinder from another brand, such as SodaStream.
How Does it Work?
Setting up the Carbonator Pro is a total breeze. First and foremost, it comes with a pretty hefty user manual. So, even if you can't figure out how it works, the instructions will have your back.
All you have to do is insert the cylinder into the machine from the bottom and lock it into place. You can either do this by laying the machine on its side on top of a towel or a cloth or by simply picking it up.
Once everything's in place, fill the glass bottle with water. There should be a line on the bottle indicating how much water to add.
Next, place the bottle at the base of the carbonator and close the cover. Push the button located on the top of the machine until you hear a buzz.
The water fizz grows with each push of the button. For example, if you like a mild fizz, give it two pushes. For maximum fizz, make it three.
After that, push the pressure release lever halfway down until you hear a release sound. Finally, press the release handle all the way down to lift the cover.
Before you know it, you've got a bottle of sparkling carbonated water!
To add a little zing, you can use one of Aarke's flavor drops, which are sugar-free and made from natural ingredients. I mean, how delicious does black raspberry sound?
Like with every product on the market, there's the good and the bad. Here are some things in this machine that I, as well as some other people, don't find that good:
- It’s too large and heavy: the machine is 20 inches tall and weighs 17 pounds. Needless to say, this can and will make it hard to fit under your cabinets, store, or even lift.
- It’s expensive at $300, and other than the glass container, the Carbonator Pro doesn't exactly offer anything substantially new.
- Like all sparking water makers, It requires the use of CO2 canisters, which need to be purchased separately and can be inconvenient to replace.
What Makes the Aarke Carbonator Pro Stand Out?
While we're all aware that the Carbonator Pro has a pretty intimidating price tag, let's take a look at some of the features that set it apart from its competitors and make it worthwhile.
Other sparkling water machines typically use plastic bottles, whereas the Carbonator Pro features a glass bottle. Whether it's for the environment or your health, reducing plastic usage is always a good idea.
Another eco-friendly plus is that Aarke's gas cylinder is constructed from 100% regenerated CO2. Also, the Carbonator Pro doesn't need batteries or power to operate, so you'll be saving resources on that end too.
Easy to Use
The setup is extremely simple and quick. The entire process, from adding the gas cylinder to raising the lid, might take a couple of minutes or less. You also have control over the amount of frizz you want.
Some people, for example, like a loose bubble structure that offers the illusion of somewhat bigger bubbles and a less harsh fizz. Others like a tight bubble structure with small bubbles, which results in a more noticeable carbonation burn (think sprite).
All you have to do is push the top button until you have the right level of frizz to cleanse the palate between bites.
There's no doubt that this machine is elegant and will look fantastic sitting in your kitchen. Not to mention, the glass bottle would look nice on your dining room table as well.
Whether you choose the stainless steel or matte black kit, both provide the machine with a sturdy yet minimalistic look that most people like!
So, is the Aarke Carbonator Pro worth it? To put it simply, the only crime I believe this machine committed is its high price. Aside from that, it gets the job done quickly and looks fabulous doing it!
I'd consider the Carbonator Pro a good investment. Rather than spending hundreds of dollars on bottles and cans of carbonated water, you can invest in this machine. It's quite durable and long-lasting, ensuring that your money is well spent.