Monday, October 05, 2015

5 Fall Flavors that are Foreign to Foreigners

Alternate title: That time I bought 5 different drinks, took approximately 1 sip of each for the purpose of this post, then put them in the fridge so they could become flat while waiting for my husband to come home and drink them.  (...but that wouldn't all fit in the url.)

First up - welcome to anyone who may have wandered over here from my comic in NagMag this month.  If you're in the city and you haven't seen the October issue yet - go pick up a copy!  (or if you want to see it without leaving the warm safe glow of your computer screen, [click here] to download the issue - I'm on page 9), They featured a 1 panel piece of mine on a page highlighting some tips for new foreigners to the area, and now I'm clearly famous.


You might remember a few weeks back when I talked about fall flavors, and how while in the US it's ALL about pumpkin spice, here there's a whole lot of sweet potato love.

I've noticed a few more seasonal flavors pop up in our local stores since then.  Specifically in the drink aisle.  And since today I was thinking "oh god, I don't have a good topic for this week's blog post - I have failed as a writer and a person," I decided to pick up a few of these special beverages to taste test for my loyal audience.

So, under the careful supervision of the ever faithful Mac-dog, here are our contenders:

Fanta (Coke) Soda - Asian Pear flavor
Lipton Tea - Sweet Pumpkin Tea Latte
Asahi Soda - PaPaPaPa Party! Energy Juice (...jack-o-lantern orange flavor?)
Mets (Kirin) Soda - Lemon Squash Soda Water
Pepsi Soda - Pepsi Ghost, MYSTERY FLAVOR!  (why yes I am most excited about this one)




I've decided to rank each of these items on the following:
A.  Taste accuracy:  1-5 on how close it tastes to what it claims to taste like
B.  Chug-a-bility: 1-5 on how well I feel like I could chug* it, aka, this is refreshing enough that I want to keep drinking it instead of meekly sipping it and hoping I can discreetly ditch it on an end table at a party before it gets too unbearably warm.
*I have been informed that if you are not American, you may call this "Skull-a-bility"
C.  Repeat Customer-ability:  1-5 on my own personal excitement regarding the experience and whether or not I would give more money to keep drinking each of these things.
D.  Bonus Round: 1-5 on any extra thoughts I have that didn't fit into the above.
So.  In the immortal words of Mario, Ah-here-we-go!

Fanta Asian Pear Soda
The Mister and I have enjoyed Asian Pear season here - they're a very refreshing fruit, not too sweet, but juicy and crisp.  And an easy grab and go snack.  I have high hopes for this taste in my mouth.
A:  4  It does indeed taste like Asian Pears, if those pears were sweet and bubbly.  Since I like that actual pears are not that sweet, I had to take a point away.
B:  2.5  I couldn't chug this, it's too sophisticated a flavor.  Maybe if I kept my pinky out... herm no.
C:  2  I think if I was jonesing for something in this vein, I'd just go with apple.  Which is probably because I'm an American and more used to apple flavored things, but this is just enough off of that taste to be something for which I'd really need to have a unique and focused mind-set.
D:  1  The first sip was good, the second sip was like "ah no."  
Total:  9.5/20

Lipton Sweet Pumpkin Tea Latte
I wouldn't be surprised to see this sold in the states as well.
A:  5 YES.  Yes this is fall to my basic American white girl brain.
B:  4 Chug is maybe a strong word, but where I was gently sipping the Pear soda, I was taking big swigs of this.  There will be none left to share with The Mister.
C:  4 I can totally see myself buying this again, but I don't know that I would make a bee line for it when I busted into the supermarket.
D:  5 If I'm honest, this is the drink that sort of started the idea for this post because my inner basic b*tch needed justification for buying a pumpkin spiced beverage.
Total:  18/20

Asahi's PaPaPaPa Party! Energy Juice
Fair warning, I'm not real big on energy drinks (I drink multiple pots of coffee like the good lord intended), but since this was in a big halloween-style display I felt it needed a chance.
A: 1 Okay I checked, it is supposed to be citrus/ orange flavored.  It tastes not like those things enough that I had to check the bottle despite being familiar with citrus/ orange flavor.  It is instead like crushed smarties in seltzer water.  It is unpleasant.  Maybe if I was at a party I could put enough booze in there to make it not taste like crushed smarty?  But then it would just taste like booze.  Yeah no.
B: 4?  I am trying to be nice.  I would chug this simply because it would get it finished so I could drink something else quicker.  But I could chug it.  I would burp like a champ after that.  And also I would probably reenact the video of the little cupcake girl, because energy drink.

C: 1 The only reason this isn't a 0 or negative number is because the name would make it a perfect drink to serve at a "Parappa the Rapper" themed party.  But outside that very dated 90's reference?  No.  Just... No.
D:  2 I kinda wanna throw a 90's video game themed party now.
EDIT: BUMPING THIS UP TO 5 BECAUSE THERE IS A SPRYO ADULT ONESIE AND SO NOW I WILL HAVE TO DO THIS.
there are wings. and horns. and take my money already.


Total: 11 (8)/20 
...I am sad this horrible drink got a higher score than the Fanta soda, but rules is rules, and Spyro is my jam.

Mets Lemon Squash Soda Water
Mets puts out soda waters in a similar fashion to LaCroix.  I make this comparison specifically because LaCroix to Jenna Marbles (that link has swears, but is true to my life at the moment) is Mets to KpMcD.  A month ago they put out a new grapefruit flavor and it consumed my life for multiple weeks.  I finally had to quit cold turkey when I found myself going multiple blocks out of my way on walks because it would bring me past a Kirin (the beer company that owns Mets) vending machine on the street and I could get my fix.  Now they have this Squash Lemon flavor.  Let's fall off the wagon together.
A:  3 I taste the lemon, I don't taste the squash.  But golly it's tasty.
B:  5  I opened the bottle as I started typing the above paragraph.  The bottle is already empty.
C:  5 I need it to not be 5.  I need to not get into buying these, but I would drink every drop of this that entered my home.
D:  1 Because I already know I'm going to end up spiraling back out of control on my Mets needs, so I am punishing the drink with a poor score in this section to make up for it.
Total:  14/20

Pepsi Ghost, MYSTERY FLAVOR!
I really only like 1 kind of pepsi, and that's Wild Cherry Pepsi.  In all other respects, Coke is where it's at.  So while I'm excited about this, mystery flavored pepsi has the potential to go real wrong, real fast... plus what if Japan has weird Japan flavors for pepsi.  Oh gosh.
A:  5 IT'S TOTALLY WILD CHERRY PEPSI THIS IS THE BESSSSSST
B:  5  We all know soda is the ultimate non-alcoholic beverage to chug.  Yes.  I can and will chug this. (Once my stomach is not completely full of Lemon Squash Soda Water.)
C:  3?  I love that I got the one pepsi product that I totally enjoy.  I am nervous that it is an absolute fluke and next time I'll get tuna flavored pepsi or something.
D:  3 I haven't had a legit cola in possibly 6 months.  INSTANT SUGAR HIGH.  Sugar High.  SUGAR. HIIIIIIIIGH.
click the picture. get the reference.
Total:  16/20


In conclusion, it would seem congratulations are in order for Lipton's Sweet Pumpkin Tea Latte, and I... drank a lot of liquid and really need to pee.  Okay byeeeeeee!


What was the weirdest drink you've ever tried?
Tell me in the comments!


Today's little language lesson
パパパパパーティーのみものは、大嫌いですよ.
papapapa pa-tea nomimono wa, dai-ki-rai desu yo.
I greatly dislike the PaPaPaPa Party Drink.

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