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Nitro Pepsi: subtle fizz creates smooth sips

Nitro Pepsi

In the long-standing cola wars that have been Coca-Cola vs. Pepsi, the two companies have tried to outdo each other. 

From the competition of the original soda and expanding nationwide, to developing iterations of the flagship drink to go diet, have no sugar, caffeine, carbs, (insert any other health item that society has deemed bad for you). They’ve built a whole portfolio of drinks both fizzy and not to build global drink powers, the two companies have simultaneously written to a new chapter in the war.

Innovation to the boldest of flavors.

A soda historian (of which I am not and never in my wildest years could be) could argue that the chapter started in the 1980s when Coca-Cola brought us the massive failure that was New Coke. After the New Coke flop, both companies held off on new flavors until the mid 2000s. Coca-Cola brought forth its combination of Coca-Cola with Coffee, and its newest variation of the original Coca-Cola flavor, Coca-Cola Starlight.

Pepsi also had their bold ideas, including their own 1980s flop Pepsi AM (Switch out your morning coffee for extra-caffeinated Pepsi), Crystal Pepsi, and Pepsi Blue.

Now Nitro Pepsi takes the top spot in the “upscale posh” soda, if said class of soda exists.

Bragging that it is the first nitrogen-infused cola, consumers truly pay the steep price for drinking history. A pack of four 13.65 fluid ounce cans costs a wallet-punching $5.48 at Walmart. for 50¢ less, a 12 pack of regular Pepsi is yours.

The specific directions that Nitro Pepsi gives seem to be a bit tedious, but understandable. Have your drinking glass in hand, crack open a Nitro Pepsi, and immediately have a hard pour into the cup. No, do not serve the drink with ice, nor drink it through a straw.

Once poured, the drink is very reminiscent of a Guinness Draft in terms of appearance. A large creamy head greets me at the top, accompanied by a dark cola layer all the way down to the bottom of the glass. The claim of having smaller bubbles is precisely correct, almost as small as grains of sugar in water, in comparison to the large fizzy bubble that appear in almost every soft drink.

On the first sip, the layers of creamy head and dark cola combine for a smooth finish, where you remove a sometimes harsh fizz in your mouth usual with most sodas and gives you a full focus onto the actual taste of Pepsi. The absence of fizz makes the drink feel almost velvet-like.

Halfway down the glass, the head is gone, and all the consumer is left with is the non-carbonated soda. The thought rushed through my head, “Did I really just spend five bucks to have a flat Pepsi?” 

Nitro Pepsi is a bit of a revolutionary. Never has a soft drink eliminated the trademark fizz that gives a soda its traditional mouthfeel. It’s an interesting journey if you’re willing to pony up the big bucks.

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