Does this new cola really pair well with fried noodles?

In June last year, Pepsi blew our minds by releasing a new type of Pepsi Zero specifically designed to be drunk with karaage (Japanese fried chicken).

Tried and tested by our own Mr Sato.

Fast forward a year and the brand is now set to blow everyone’s minds again, this time with a new Pepsi designed to be drunk with Yakisoba (Japanese fried noodles).

The “Yakisoba Senyo Cola” (“Cola Exclusively for Yakisoba“) isn’t on sale yet, as it’s due to hit stores around the nation from 13 June, but our team was able to get a bottle in advance for a pre-sales taste-test.

The first thing we noticed about the new Pepsi is the fact that it’s mint-flavoured, which threw us off our game as we never would’ve thought to add mint to our yakisoba before. Still, we were keen to find out what the unexpected pairing would taste like, so our cola-loving reporter P.K. Sanjun whipped up a plate of yakisoba to begin the tasting.

Like the Cola Exclusively for Karaage, this new Pepsi is based on the Nama Pepsi (“Raw Pepsi”), which made its debut in 2021 as the brand’s most refreshing cola ever. With less of a syrupy aftertaste, this Pepsi is said to refresh the taste buds rather than sweeten them, and the addition of dietary fibre is said to cut through fatty foods and help aid digestion.

This is actually the fourth type of “senyo” Pepsi to hit the market — following Christmas Fried Chicken and Zangi — with Pepsi saying it decided upon yakisoba as the next meal partner due to the fact that summer festival season is just around the corner, and fried noodles are a popular food at summer festivals.

Pepsi says this new drink will leave you with a refreshing aftertaste, even if you eat heavily seasoned yakisoba. In fact, they say “the stronger the yakisoba flavour, the better”, but P.K. wanted to get a swig of it on its own first, to find out just how minty it would be.

Breathing a sigh of relief, P.K. told us the herb flavour wasn’t very strong — he could just feel a hint of mint in the background — but how would it taste after eating yakisoba?

▼ Slurp…

▼ …sip!

The sip turned into a glug, as P.K.’s taste buds relished in the sweet, cold, sharp refreshment that swept over them. It was like a cold shower for his taste buds, and now that they felt squeaky clean, it was time to mess them up again with a mouthful of oily noodles.

But then, as he reached for his chopsticks, something unexpected happened. He searched for the flavour of mint and found it wasn’t there.

“What was the point of adding mint if you can’t taste it?” P.K. wondered. There was no mint power at play here — the refreshment seemed to be delivered solely through the power of cola. Thinking this might have something to do with the yakisoba, P.K. decided to try the Pepsi with takoyaki (fried octopus balls), which have a similar sauce but a lighter flavour profile.

▼ Nope — no mint power here.

Granted, the yakisoba and the takoyaki both paired incredibly well with the drink — they were totally compatible, enhancing the flavours and making each one go down a treat.

However, for P.K., the mint didn’t seem to add anything to the partnership. Or did it? After thinking about it for a while, P.K. wondered if the mint might really be doing something in the background to lift the flavours and add to the cooling sensation of the drink. Plus, if the mint had been any stronger it probably would’ve overpowered everything and made him recoil, like he did when trying the Drinkable Happy Turn that made his stomach turn.

There was no such imbalance of flavours here, and in the end, that’s really what you want in a drink. There’s no doubt a lot of testing went into making this Pepsi, and given that it paired so well with the food it was designed for, this new drink looks set to be a summer hit!

The new Pepsi will be available at stores nationwide from 13 June, at a recommended retail price of 160 yen (US$1.15).

Related: Pepsi Japan
Photos ©SoraNews24

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