Could they make this grass-like drink taste good? We had to find out.

If you’ve ever tried aojiru before, we wouldn’t be surprised if you didn’t like it. This popular Japanese health drink has a name that translates to “green juice” and is made by juicing green, leafy vegetables. It’s basically Japan’s version of a green smoothie, but it’s famous for tasting so bad that commercials would advertise it as, “Gross! One more!!!”

▼ Aojiru

That’s why our Japanese-language reporter Mr. Sato was skeptical when he heard about the opening of a trendy aojiru cafe in Tokyo’s Akasaka neighborhood called 33Aojiru. He had nothing but less-than-fond memories of drinking it since childhood, but for the sake of science, and our readers, he decided to give it a shot.

▼ The outside of the store looks approachable enough.

From the menu, it was apparent right away that this wasn’t simply aojiru. Rather, it was aojiru mixed in with other, more delicious drink bases to cut out the bitter, grassy taste. The closest thing to straight-up aojiru is their Aojiru Smoothie, but even that has strawberry, peach, and pineapple mixed into it.

Along with that aojiru smoothie, they offer choices like aojiru lemonade and aojiru strawberry lemon squash, and most of them are mixtures of sweet and sour flavors. Mr. Sato went with an Aojiru Jelly and Milk drink that cost him 723 yen (US$6.80). The drink that was delivered to him looked like a fancy Frappuccino that you’d get at Starbucks.

▼ With all that whipped cream and milk, can you really call it aojiru at this point?

The latte was mixed with kuromitsu brown sugar syrup, and the mountain of whipped cream was also sprinkled with some bright green aojiru powder.

▼ It almost looks like matcha powder.

Mr. Sato took a sip, and he found that he liked it a lot! If he had to make a commercial for this, he could wholeheartedly say “Delicious! One more!!!” He thinks they could further boost its popularity by giving it a fashionable-sounding name, something like “Ao-ppuccino.” So if you’re curious about aojiru but don’t want to jump right into the bitter, grassy taste can use this as a starting point. Then you can wash it down with a can of dashi soup!

Cafe information
33Aojiru Tokyo / サンサン アオジル トーキョー
Address: Tokyo-to, Minato-ku, Akasaka 9-7-4 Midtown Galleria B1F
東京都港区赤坂9-7-4 ミッドタウン ガレリア地下1階
Open 11 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Aojiru glass/pitcher image: Pakutaso
All other photos © SoraNews24