Wednesday, August 22, 2012

From the Beverage Aisle: Crystal Pepsi

Product: Crystal Pepsi
Company: PepsiCo
Years: 1992-1993

Marketed as a "Caffeine Free alternative to Normal colas", Crystal Pepsi stormed the market in the early 90's with Mega-Rock Star status. It was hyped for weeks before it's release, with it's world premier commercials shown during Super Bowl XXVII (that's 27 for you non-Romans out there). Unfortunately, it turned out to be just another one hit wonder in the era of Fad Foods. It was the soda that everyone had to have........once.
I tried it, and though it wasn't bad, but it wasn't good enough to try again either. I sort of had one of those mind/mouth reflexes where your brain thinks it knows the taste before you taste it, then you taste it and your mouth says to your brain "How about that, bitch? Not what you thought it was going to taste like at all, is it?", which for me, usually sends my brain into shut-down mode so it can regroup itself from the mouths insults. I believe I was in a coma for 6 days after trying Crystal Pepsi.

I'm pretty sure that people who remember Crystal Pepsi had a similar experience (Only trying it once, that is, not the whole week long coma thing....), which is why sales for CP (Crystal Pepsi, not Cerebral palsy) were way up, for exactly one year. After everyone tried it and never bought it again, sales plunged and they pulled the plug. Crystal Pepsi was dead. They should have seen this coming....I mean, it seemed pretty "Clear" to me. HA! see what I did there?

2 Little known facts (ok, little known facts to me):
- After the success of Crystal Pepsi, Pepsico actually had Crystal Tab on the market for a short time. I don't remember seeing this at all.
- Pepsi returned several months later with a reformulated citrus drink titled "Crystal From Pepsi", which was even more short lived then Crystal Pepsi

And the worst part of all was it forever chained everyones memory of Crystal Pepsi with this Van Halen song, which I'm pretty sure is the reason you never hear it anymore:


  1. Brad Jones, the guy behind the "Cinema Snob" movie reviews, tried desperately to get Pepsi to bring the stuff back. They declined.

    You can get Crystal Pepsi from; they call it "Not See Kola."

  2. I remember it being gross. My brain must have blocked out the rest of the trauma. Ditto for New Coke blechhh

  3. I remember trying it and it was a unique experience. You can drink a really good pop and before you know it, you've finished it. This was the opposite-when I looked at the bottle I swear it was fuller then when I started. Maybe it was all psychological but it just didn't taste right as I recall.

  4. tab is made by coke. still available and still awesome

  5. I remember this, they actually had "sample" bottles delivered with our local newspaper. Tired the sample never bought a bottle...

  6. I remember this, they actually had "sample" bottles delivered with our local newspaper. Tired the sample never bought a bottle...

  7. They actually brought this back this year, I think for a limited run. I guess we're in 90's nostalgia Right Now, (see what I did there?)

  8. I didn't think it was bad. Tried it again and quite liked it, regular Pepsi isn't very good if you ask me.