When I was a kid I was only allowed one soda a day. Normally I would have a Coke at lunch, but sometimes, when I knew my mom and I were going out for Tex-Mex or to Chilis or wherever, I would save it until dinner. See, I knew restaurants offered free refills and attentive servers would often replace your half-drank fizzy sugar beverage for a full one without asking, thereby blurring the lines of what constitutes one [already-oversized] soda. I had found the loophole; it was one drink but of infinite size, and I could hardly be to blame for someone being good at their job. It was the perfect crime. Until it wasn’t, when the server would say, “We only have Pepsi.”
According to CNBC, PepsiCo is looking to be first to market in America with a coffee-infused soda, beating out Coke Plus Coffee’s as-yet unknown US release date by getting Pepsi Café onto retail shelves in April 2020. The 12-ounce beverage has been in development for over 1.5 years and is said to have twice the caffeine of regular can of Pepsi. And in case Pepsi Café Original isn’t enough of a sensory overload for you, they will also be releasing Pepsi Café Vanilla at the same time for maximal flavor explosion.
This isn’t PepsiCo’s first foray into the coffee-infused arts. Per CNBC, the company introduced the “short-lived” Pepsi Kona in 1996 as well as 2004’s Pepsiccino, “a creamier version meant to taste more like cappuccino.” Which if I’m being honest, is something I’d probably try at least once, especially if they had some sort of flavor boost option, like say, a Vanilla Pepsiccino or maybe a seasonally appropriate Pumpkin Spice Pepsiccino. (I expect residuals when the Pumpkin Spice Pepsiccino inevitably becomes real.)
And maybe I'm being too harsh on Pepsi. Sure, I don't like it (when I would go to my dad's every other weekend, all they had to drink was water and Diet Pepsi, so of course I only drank Diet Pepsi for two days straight and now all I taste whenever I have a Pepsi product is aluminum and bad parenting), but it's still bubbles, sugar, and coffee. The floor for such a combination is still pretty high. It'll still be a better mixer than all that Gosling's Ginger Beer you burned yourself out on when every bar started carrying it so they could start charging you “cocktail” prices.
Pepsi Café is only going to be available for a limited time, so you better stock up to hold you over until Coke Plus Coffee comes out.
Top image via PepsiCo