Galco's, the amazing soda pop shop, celebrates its 58th anniversary today in Highland Park. The store hasn't always been known for selling hundreds of hard-to-find sodas. It had been an Italian grocer since 1897, but when John F. Nese took over his father's store, he turned the place into a pop emporium with classic, small-batch and exotic sodas - everything from Lemmy Sparkling Lemonade (made since 1939) to Brain Wash Blue soda.
To celebrate, get a Blockbuster sandwich - "The Original" has Italian dry salami, mortadella, salami cotto, ham, mayo, mustard, pickles and provolone on a French roll - and a White Rose Soda for only $5.80 today from noon-2 PM. The cream soda and root beer are custom made for Galco's, paying homage to Highland Park's spring-water history (the White Rose Springs Water Company bottled water and soda on Figueroa near Sycamore Grove Park until the 1960s). Enjoy your lunch on the new patio or take it to go. But at least stick around long enough to scan the soda shelves, as well as the growing sake, hard cider and craft beer selection.