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REVIEW: Pepsi Special (Japan)

Written by | December 11, 2012

Topics: 7 Rating, Japan, Pepsi, Soda

Pepsi Special (Japan)

Look at Japan’s Pepsi Special.

Having the word “special” on its label makes it soooo special.

Well, do you know who else was labeled “special”?

Me.

Oh sure, Japanese scientists did research on dextrin, which is in Pepsi Special, and learned that it prevented rats from absorbing the fat they ate and because of that the cola has been designated as a “Food for Specified Health Uses” by the Japanese government.

Well, I aced several tests in the first grade that involved reading at a higher level than all my other classmates, being able to put the square block into the square hole, and drawing trees that looked like trees, all of which designated me for a gifted and talented class.

But look at me now. I could’ve been a doctor, lawyer, pharmaceutical salesperson, or an actor who plays a doctor, lawyer or pharmaceutical salesperson, but the only real accomplishments I’ve had are barely graduating from college, not getting arrested for anything, eating an entire large Pizza Hut pepperoni pizza in one sitting, and not having watched a minute of James Cameron’s Titanic.

I don’t know if the pressure of being labeled as “special” got to me or the years of praise caused my ego to become so large that my arrogance destroyed almost every meaningful relationship I’ve had, leaving me as an empty shell of my former self, but whatever happened I’ve learned that being labeled “special” doesn’t guarantee success.

Pepsi Special should look at my paunch and unshaven face and realize that it could be me in the future. I don’t know what the beverage equivalent of being overweight, unshaven, and sitting in your underwear writing junk food reviews is, but whatever it is, Pepsi Special won’t feel special.

Besides the dextrin and the fancy stamp of approval from Japan’s National Institute of Health and Nutrition, which looks like someone at the front of a boat yelling “I’m the king of the world,” was there anything else special about Pepsi Special?

Yes, Pepsi Special smelled like Pepsi Next and, this is probably a bit blasphemous, it tasted like Coke Zero.

I enjoyed its cola flavor. It didn’t have a strong artificial sweetener flavor like Diet Pepsi and it was nowhere close to being as syrupy sweet as regular Pepsi, but it definitely tasted more like a diet cola. The dextrin didn’t affect the cola’s viscosity in any way and it just blended in with the flavor of the cola.

As for the claims that Pepsi Special will prevent the absorption of the fat in the foods we eat, it’s hard for me to determine if it’s doing anything because I only purchased two bottles. Heck, it’s also hard for me to tell if there are any benefits because I’m not a scientist. I could’ve been one, just like I could’ve been a doctor, lawyer, pharmaceutical salesperson, or an actor who plays a doctor, lawyer or pharmaceutical salesperson, but instead I have to settle for a clean driving abstract.

Stuffing five grams of fiber into a cola that doesn’t taste like it has five grams of fiber is impressive. Although, I wouldn’t recommend drinking a lot of Pepsi Special in one day because the combination of carbonation and fiber can’t be good for both end of the digestive system.

(Nutrition Facts – 11 kcal, 0.4~2.0 grams of fat, 25~46 milligrams of sodium, 5.4 grams of fiber, 0 grams of protein.)

Other Pepsi Special reviews:
Kotaku

Item: Pepsi Special (Japan)
Purchased Price: $4.95
Size: 490 ml
Purchased at: eBay
Rating: 7 out of 10
Pros: Pleasant cola flavor, if you enjoy low- or zero-calorie Pepsi colas. A bottle has more than 5 grams of fiber. Making diet cola healthy. Being one the of few people on Earth who hasn’t seen Titanic.
Cons: Only available in Japan and on eBay. Hard to determine if the dextrin is doing its job. If you don’t enjoy low- or zero-calorie colas, you won’t like it. Drinking too much of it might turn you into a burp and fart machine.

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NEWS: Japan’s Pepsi Special Sounds Like It’s A Beverage Sumo Wrestlers Will Avoid

Written by | November 8, 2012

Topics: Japan, Pepsi, Soda

IMG_0435

Do you eat fatty foods AND live in Japan?

Well, I have a beverage for you, my fatty food feasting friend. It’s the new Pepsi Special, which will be released in Japan later this month. What makes this cola special? It’s special because it contains dextrin. What’s dextrin? Well, I’ll tell you what dextrin is, my fact finding friend. It’s a soluble fiber supplement that helps prevent your body from absorbing fat.

You might be thinking to yourself, “That sounds dubious.”

Well, my cynical compadre, Pepsi Special has been certified by the Japanese government as a “food for specific health use.” The certification is based on dextrin experiments with rats by Junichi Nagata and Morio Saito from Japan’s National Institute of Health and Nutrition. But Pepsi Special isn’t the only dextrin-fied cola available in Japan. Earlier this year, Kirin introduced Mets Cola.

Pepsi Special will be released in Japan on November 13th and sold for 150 yen.

Source: Foodbeast

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REVIEW: Limited Edition Dragonfruit Pepsi X

Written by | October 19, 2012

Topics: 5 Rating, Pepsi, Soda

Dragonfruit Pepsi X

I guess dragonfruit is the appropriate fruit flavor for The X Factor’s Limited Edition Pepsi X since almost everything that comes out of Simon Cowell’s mouth is verbal fire that can burn egos and Britney Spears is bat shit fruity.

Dragonfruit, or better known by Future Farmers of America members as hylocereus undatus, hylocereus costaricensis, or hylocereus megalanthus (depending on the color of the fruit’s skin and flesh), is grown in tropical areas, like this rock in the middle of the Pacific Ocean I live on.

Just like I’ve never seen an episode of The X Factor, I have yet to try dragonfruit. So seeing as how I could easily get the exotic fruit, I thought it was necessary to taste an actual dragonfruit before writing a review about the dragonfruit-flavored Pepsi X.

It’s a good thing there’s a farmer’s market down the street from me, but it’s a bad thing that dragonfruits were selling for $4.99 a pound. I bought the smallest one, which cost me $5.15.

If you’ve never seen a dragonfruit in real life or saw one when accidentally choosing a Google Image search suggestion for exotic fruits instead of, what you really wanted, exotic females, the most common type of the fruit (hylocereus undatu) has a pretty, pretty pink skin with green leaves protruding out of it and behind it there’s white flesh with tiny black seeds.

A few other interesting factoids about dragonfruits, there’s also a red-fleshed dragonfruit (hylocereus costaricensis) and if you eat too much of it you may get pseudohematuria, which is a harmless condition that turns your urine and feces reddish in color. Now that you know that, I hope you never accidentally choose a Google Image search suggestion for pseudohematuria. And knowing is half the battle.

Oh, speaking of pseudohematuria, the color of Pepsi X was noticeably lighter than regular Pepsi and it looked like it had a reddish hue.

Dragonfruit Pepsi X 2

Now that I know what dragonfruit tastes like, I can definitely say Limited Edition Dragonfruit Pepsi X doesn’t have a flavor that’s recognizable as dragonfruit. The dragonfruit’s flesh was mostly bland with a very mild sweetness. It’s as flavorful as cucumbers or kiwis. However, Pepsi X has a strong fruity and slightly floral flavor that doesn’t taste anything like dragonfruit. There’s also very little cola flavor.

Of course, I might’ve selected the wrong dragonfruit to taste and needed to buy the pseudohematuria-causing one. Or maybe, because it’s a little floral, Pepsi is trying to reproduce the flavor of dragonfruit flowers. Or maybe the flavor was developed by blending together dragon meat with fruits.

Dragonfruit Pepsi X 3

Whatever the case, I didn’t really care for Pepsi X. It’s interesting and not horrible, but I don’t see myself buying more because its unusual fruity/flowery flavor just doesn’t have The X Factor.

While I didn’t care for Pepsi X’s flavor, I LOVE that Pepsi did something I never thought they would do — release an unusual Pepsi flavor. A dragonfruit-flavored Pepsi is something I’d expect Pepsi in Japan to release, but it was released here in the U.S. That’s extremely exciting. So, within the past few months, Pepsi has launched a malt-flavored Mountain Dew and this dragonfruit-flavored Pepsi. I can’t wait to see what’s next.

(Nutrition Facts – 12 ounces – 110 calories, 0 grams of fat, 35 milligrams of sodium, 31 grams of carbohydrates, 30 grams of sugar, 0 grams of protein.)

Other Limited Edition Dragonfruit Pepsi X reviews:
Thirsty Dudes
The Holidaze

Item: Limited Edition Dragonfruit Pepsi X
Purchased Price: $3.00*
Size: 12 ounces
Purchased at: eBay
Rating: 5 out of 10
Pros: Not horrible. It’s a weird Pepsi flavor that sounds like it should be from Japan, but it’s not. Being able to buy dragonfruits down the street. Future Farmers of America.
Cons: Doesn’t taste like dragonfruit. Fruity/flowery flavor is a bit odd and doesn’t have The X Factor. Very little cola flavor. The price of dragonfruit. Pseudohematuria. Simon Cowell.

*To ensure I could review these as quickly as possible, I bought some off of eBay. It will most definitely be cheaper if you bought it in a store.

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NEWS: Pepsi Announces Dragonfruit Flavored Pepsi X

Written by | October 4, 2012

Topics: Pepsi, Soda

Update: Click here to read our Limited Edition Dragonfruit Pepsi X review

new pepsi logo

Update: Click here to read our Limited Edition Dragonfruit Pepsi X review

According to Beverage Digest’s Twitter account, Pepsi has announced on tonight’s episode of The X Factor a dragonfruit-flavored cola called Pepsi X.

The new flavor was chosen by The X Factor’s fans and contestants during “The Pepsi Flavor Audition Tour.” The limited edition Pepsi X will be available starting October 8 in 12-packs, 2-liters, and 20-ounce bottles.

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REVIEW: Pepsi Salty Watermelon (Japan)

Written by | August 21, 2012

Topics: 8 Rating, Japan, Pepsi, Soda

Salty Watermelon Pepsi 1

Ah, the watermelon. Citrullus lanatus. The Summer Mistress. The Red Witch. Queen of the Fireflies. The Seedy Lady. The Damsel of Rind Street.

No matter which name you grew up using, Her Watery Majesty never fails to call to mind the carefree days of summer and youth well spent. Hot dogs, Slip ‘N Slides, sandy beaches and the unattainable girl I was in love with who lived next to my grandparents. Sigh. I’m not sure any fruit is more imbued with the power of nostalgia than the humble watermelon.

So with summer drawing to a humid close, let us not forget what the summer of 2012 has brought us. You can proudly tell your future grandchildren that you were at home watching with bated breath the night Michael Phelps did all of those important swimming things that he did. You can tell them that, yes, you camped out in the midnight line for Tyler Perry’s Madea’s Witness Protection.

And, while nestled cozily in your underground cavern, you can explain to them that you stayed up late to watch the U.S. land the robot on Mars that would ultimately lead to the Martian invasion that nearly eradicated the human race.

It’s been an exciting few months.

And to mark all of these historic occasions, the Japanese arm of Pepsi has released their latest limited time only summer flavor, Salty Watermelon.

I’ve only had one experience with a Japanese Pepsi product and that was with their Pepsi Pink, a strawberry and milk flavored beverage that was released late in 2011. The name Pepsi Pink was a little misleading, as the drink itself was a unique soda entity that didn’t really retain any of the original Pepsi properties.

Pepsi Salty Watermelon is more true to its moniker. Upon opening the bottle, the first thing that surprised me was its nosegrope. There seemed to be some remnant of the original namesake beverage. I could detect both Pepsi and watermelon. The watermelon scent was not overpowering, but smelled a little like the artificial watermelon flavor found in so many hard candies (Jolly Ranchers, et al). But just a little.

That’s really what I was expecting this to be. Just a very sweet, very candy watermelon soda. But it’s not at all. I could still taste Pepsi. Actually, I tasted mostly Pepsi. The watermelon flavor that is weaved in is surprisingly subtle and only really makes its mark after you swallow, and then most strongly if you open your mouth to breathe. The watermelon is almost an afterthought. And it doesn’t taste like Jolly Ranchers at all, but is a pretty good approximation of actual watermelon.

The soda is also not very sweet. I don’t think I’d call it salty, but the sweetness has been scaled back considerably. It’s also very finely carbonated and has a fairly dry finish. Overall, it definitely drinks like a beverage for adults. A lot of forethought and restraint went into this drink. A sugary candy explosion it is not.

Salty Watermelon Pepsi 2

I like the bottle design. Can’t go wrong with a watermelon and a beach. And I am a fan of the slender bottles used in Japan. The color of Pepsi Salty Watermelon leaves a little to be desired though. It’s not quite watermelon red. Just sort of pinkish, I guess. But who cares? Close enough.

Salty Watermelon Pepsi 3

This is an interesting beverage. It’s not at all what I was expecting. Pepsi Japan continues to offer the world an interesting array of seasonal flavors while we in the U.S. continue to chug the same old same old. Sigh.

Pick up a bottle of Pepsi Salty Watermelon if you can. It’s good. And hurry up, the stupid fall is right around the corner.

(Thanks to wonderful Impulsive Buy reader Michele for sending us bottles of Pepsi Salty Watermelon from Japan.)

(Nutrition Facts – 100 ml – 42 kcal, 0 grams of protein, 0 grams of fat, 19 milligrams of sodium, 10.5 grams of carbohydrates.)

Other Pepsi Salty Watermelon reviews:
Kotaku
Reroute
Japanator

Item: Pepsi Salty Watermelon (Japan)
Purchased Price: FREE
Size: 490 mL
Purchased at: Somewhere in Japan 
Rating: 8 out of 10
Pros: Watermelonic accuracy. Restraint. Yellow plastic and garden hoses. Making up nicknames for fruit.
Cons: You’ll probably never get to try it. Martian invasions. Lost loves named Lindsey.

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