Move To Japan So You Can Drink Veggie Pepsi, Or Green Tea Coke

Two new cola taste sensations are set to hit the vending machines of Japan, and no, you can’t either. They’re Green Tea Coke and Shiso-flavored Pepsi. Who in the what now?

Shiso is a minty green herb popular for flavoring stuff in Japan, and, apparently, gives a nuclear green color in extract form. The offerings are not unusual for Japan where vending machines are stuffed with wacky and exotic snacks and vendors must constantly roll out crazy concoctions to stay competitive in the Japanese marketplace, where fads can literally start, explode into a national fever, and become completely forgotten within an hour.

Green tea Coca Cola to debut in Japan [AP]
Shiso Pepsi Japan Exclusive Flavor! [A Rinkya Blog]

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  1. Wombatish says:

    No way… Celery Soda is way better, and you can get it here in the good ol’ USA.

    • arkangel says:

      @Wombatish:

      Ooh, you’re giving me a craving for Dr. Brown’s Cel-Ray! Love that stuff.

      • TheWillow says:

        @arkangel: Ew and No. My grandpa used to drink that stuff and once I tried it and it actually TASTES LIKE CELERY.

        Not OK. I will be over here with my black cherry thanks.

  2. AppleAlex says:

    my friend would love this

    is it possible to import this from Japan?

    • Laura Northrup says:

      @AppleAlex:

      jlist.com/jbox.com may carry it.

      I miss Japanesesnacks.com. Though now I live nestled between great Asian groceries and don’t really need it.

    • Anne Boleyn says:

      @AppleAlex: I guarantee jbox.com will carry it. Worry not.

    • Alyson Strother says:

      @AppleAlex: You might be able to get Akinaiblog.com to put it as a request, but as someone who tried pepsi cucumber, it’s probably not even gonna be worth the novelty-dare factor.

    • goodcow says:

      @AppleAlex: Yeah, I saw this on JList/JBox today before this article and planned on ordering some, but at 600g a bottle the shipping makes this completely impractical from a cost standpoint.

    • tonashideska says:

      @AppleAlex:
      Check out your local Uwajimaya store

      • Clobberella says:

        @tonashideska: There are only 3 in the country. I live near one of them (Beaverton) and they don’t have any of the funky Pepsi or Coke flavors. The Seattle store might have it, as they are much larger, but that and Bellvue are the only other options as far as that chain goes. I would very much love to get my hands on some cucumber Pepsi, if they still make it, but alas, I can’t find it anywhere without having to buy a whole case and paying out a gazillion dollars in shipping costs.

  3. H3ion says:

    I’m holding out for Diet Sushi Coke.

  4. kdui says:

    there’s also curry soda and wasabi soda…

  5. Vanilla5 says:

    I would totally try this. World of Coca Cola, here I come! (Cheaper than going to Japan or having it shipped here.)

  6. IT-Chick says:

    The Green Tea Coke actually sounds pretty awesome… that’s not sarcasm… I want one.

  7. D0rk says:

    First Cucumber Pepsi, now this?

    I’ll pass. My diet of Mt. Dew already makes my bodily fluids glow a startling green.

  8. Laura Northrup says:

    jlist.com/jbox.com may carry it.

    I miss Japanesesnacks.com. Though now I live nestled between great Asian groceries and don’t really need it.

  9. elysse says:

    eh, I’ve been burned once with green tea Pocky (not bad, just shockingly unexpected!).. do, however, bring on the melon soda for american consumption. It’s the best soda ever. OM NOM.

  10. Peter Payne says:

    We do have the Green Tea Coke up at J-List. [www.jbox.com]

  11. Jessica Haas says:

    Sadly, these aren’t the craziest drinks to come out of Japan.

    [www.cracked.com]

    Yogurt Pepsi, Curry Ramune, pig placenta… And that’s only what’s on that site.

    • Alyson Strother says:

      @Moosehawk: You do understand that all the panty-related crap is reserved to places like porn shops, right?

      Way too many folks seem to think they’re out in front of the Wal-Mart with the RC cola or something.

    • HogwartsAlum says:

      @Jessica Haas:

      Ha ha ha! The first thing I thought of was that article when I read the post’s headline!

  12. Telekinesis123 says:

    I’ve been jealous of these yummy sounding drinks for some time, bring them over here!

  13. jjpember says:

    I read the one on the left as shisno, and it immediately made me think of RvB, and then I wondered if shisno is a real word, and if so why would someone make a drink with carried the dirty/gross connotation of that word. I then looked at the picture again and realized I was wrong.

    RvB goes something like this
    1:What exactly is a shisno?
    2:Do you have an animal where you come from that is considered the stinkiest animal?
    1:Yes, a skunk
    2:Does a skunk have excrement?
    1:Yes
    2:Does that excrement also have excrement?
    1:NO
    2:Well then there is no equivalent in your language.

    • jjpember says:

      @jjpember: with should be which

      and “RvB goes something like this” should say “the RvB skit goes something like this”

      I’m tired and need more caffeine to finish the day off

  14. GOODBYE CONSUMERIST says:

    In English, Shiso is generally known as Perilla [en.wikipedia.org] or Beefsteak. It is actually found in a lot of Japanese foods over here„ÄÅsometimes in combination with Ume aka Japanese Plum/Apricot — delicious! Shiso is also used to brew a popular brand of Shochu called Tantakatan [en.wikipedia.org] .

    • yagisencho says:

      @Galapagod:

      Shiso rocks. For the curious, think of it as a different sort of mint leaf. It’s not exactly minty, but that’s the closest analogy I have, and explains how it could be considered as a drink flavoring.

  15. ShrikirtiHaele says:

    I’d try the coke, I bought green tea kit kats from japan on ebay once and they were kind of awesome.

  16. Moosehawk says:

    Japan is home to all kinds of weird shit in vending machines.

    They actually have vending machines that deposit panties with notes that girls attach to them.

  17. ShariC says:

    I think this information should be presented with the proper context about marketing in Japan and why these sort of strange flavors are released annually in Japan.

    The Japanese market is different than that in the West. They demand novelty more frequently and get quite bored with the tried and true. Where many Americans are looking for something great that they can turn to time and time again, most Japanese consumers are looking for something they can buy once or twice for the experience and then move on. This is why there are things like the apple vingegar KitKat and Pepsi White.

    [japanesesnackreviews.blogspot.com]
    [japanesesnackreviews.blogspot.com]

    The bottom line is that the Japanese consumers care less about finding something great that they can keep on buying and more about having an interesting experience with food or drink. These weird flavors are just as strange in the eyes of the Japanese as they are in the eyes of Westerners so it’s important not to think that the Japanese are seeing such flavors as mundane. The only thing that they don’t find odd is the fact that such bizarre flavors keep popping up to try and grab their attention. Weirdness is common in Japan, but it’s still weird.

    • Jesse in Japan says:

      @ShariC: That’s true, but it’s also important to remember that, every once in a while, these things do catch on and they can last for quite a while. And that’s why you can still buy soda that has Jello in it.

    • TheWillow says:

      @ShariC: This is how I shop for food, so I’m sad to miss out.

  18. Alyson Strother says:

    A few qualms:

    1) Shiso is not really all that “minty” – too bitter for that, I think. In general mint flavored things don’t do well here in Japan. Not that I think Shiso will do that well – most of my Japanese friends’ reactions to this and Cucumber were “why?”

    2) The vending machines are “stuffed with wacky and exotic snacks”? Jesus. Yeah, sometimes you’ll find a machine with soup or something in it, but in general it’s iced/hot coffee, tea, some sports drinks, and cola. OMG HOW WACKY. (although seriously, America, canned ice coffee vending machines are awesome and you should make them happen)

    I think in general the Japanese market likes limited-edition things, especially seasonal items. There are a lot of foods/snacks/etc that you can only get in summer/winter/etc. Even though here in Osaka there seems to only be 3 seasons – Hot, Cold, and Wet, culturally they’re all about that 4 seasons stuff, and the snacks in 7/11 reflect that. It’s not because they’re “wacky” or obsessed with fads (more than America, at least. I mean, seriously? Pop culture is disposable everywhere you go). And I think the limited-edition aspect makes things sell better – kind of like the Shamrock Shakes come March. Back home I never go to McD’s usually, but when those shakes come around I go grab one. Doesn’t Pepsi do weird novelty-flavor crap back home too with the Mt. Dew and mystery Doritos?

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying to say “you baka gaijin do not understand mysterious orient vending machines! (^0^)~” or anything like that, but the western tendency to make a huge deal out of things no one cares about over here is just as tiring as when Japanese folks ask me if it’s hard to sleep in my shoes with a gun under my pillow every night.

    • dryfire says:

      @Alyson Strother:

      Some guys I met in Nagoya were very surprised to find out Omu-rice (Omlet-rice) is not an American dish.

      Most machines have pretty standard stuff (though the prevalence of coffee was a bit surprising–I don’t think I saw a machine without some) and I found almost everything I tried palatable.

  19. Anonymous says:

    Diet Coke Plus Green Tea wasn’t invented for the Japanese market and you don’t have to go all the way to Japan for it. It’s been on the shelves here in Denmark since January and I believe it’s been out in the UK for far longer than that.

    Its sister product Diet Coke Plus Vitamins has been under fire from consumer organization and politicians because of their “fortifying” it with vitamins (and as a result marketing the product as a “healthy” drink).

  20. RandomHookup says:

    I was kinda expecting a photo with a big “NOT YOURS” plastered on it.

  21. centraal says:

    I’ll stick with Pocari Sweat, thanks.

  22. JulesNoctambule says:

    Shiso soda? I was wondering what it would take to get my best friend back to Japan, and I think I might have found it.

  23. barb95 says:

    I love me some good old tap water!

  24. Scuba Steve says:

    They have a lot of these flavors at the taste-testing section at the World of Coke Museum in Atlanta GA.

    Worth the 15 bucks I think.

  25. Black-Cat says:

    I’d try them just to see what they tasted like.