Coca-Cola Is Releasing An Alcoholic Drink In Japan & Here's What It Will Taste Like

Ad failed to load

Coca-Cola had modest beginnings in 1886 with nothing but a soda fountain in Atlanta, Georgia, the soda giant explains on its website. Fast forward to today, and it's one of the most recognizable names in stores — and probably billions of homes around the world. (In fact, the name is one of the most understood words in the world, the website says, coming in second only to "okay.") Coke has evolved and branched out over the years to satisfy our many wishes and cravings, and the newest addition to their line of beverages is venturing into more adult territory: Coca-Cola's first alcoholic drink is coming to Japan, according to Jorge Garduño — the president of Coca-Cola's Japan business unit. In an interview with Coca-Cola, Garduño shared more about the motivation behind this new beverage.

According to Coca-Cola, for decades, Japan has the hub for creativity and innovation within the brand. With a generous number of options to choose from, catering heavily to convenience with vending machine purchases at every corner, and offering products that don't exist elsewhere, Japan has become a bit of a trendsetter. Interestingly, though, as Coca-Cola points out, other countries started catching on — including the U.S. That would explain why you now see people drinking kombucha and vinegar here.

It only makes sense, then, that Coca-Cola in Japan continues to think outside the box. This time, they're doing it with a type of drink known as chu-hi.

Ad failed to load

According to Garduño, chu-hi is a canned drink made with alcohol, traditionally created with shōchū (which is a type of distilled beverage), sparkling water, and extra flavoring. Alice Gordenker of The Japan Times offers up a quick history lesson: the drink came about not long after World War II, she writes. Alcohol was very limited, whiskey was for fancy people, and the average Joe was typically left with shōchū — a cheap spirit you can distill from almost anything. While sweet potatoes are often used as the base, legally, wheat, barley, brown sugar, sesame, chestnuts, milk, and buckwheat are the bases, says Gordenker. It didn't taste all that great, so people would mix it with soda water. This helps explain its name: they started calling it a shōchū highball, which was later shortened to chuhai. Later variations were made with tea, flavored syrups, or fruit juice. In 1983, it hit store shelves.

The drink is rich with history, but Coca-Cola is totally new to adult beverages. As Garduño said, however, they want to push the boundaries.

Ad failed to load

While Chu-Hi already sounds like it'll be a hit, Garduño cautions us not to expect to see it all around the world.

"While many markets are becoming more like Japan, I think the culture here is still very unique and special, so many products that are born here will stay here," he says. Added Coke spokesperson Yohko Okabe in a conversation with CNN, this drink is a "highly Japan-specific approach given the complexity and richness." Way to dash my dreams, people. While the odds of seeing their chu-hi in grocery stores in America are slim to none, CEO of Coca-Cola James Quincey told CNN last month, "Never say never," in regard to bringing this type of drink to the U.S. There's hope! Hopefully coke will at least stay openminded to the idea, considering the people of the world are drinking 19,400 Coca-Cola beverages every second, according to their website.

Ad failed to load

Coca-Cola didn't say much else about the drink, like when specifically it'll be released this year. If you're in the neighborhood of Japan at some point in 2018, though, stop by a local convenience store and see if it's made it to the shelves yet.

Ad failed to load
Must Reads

11 Ways To Stay Positive When Dating Feels Like The Worst, According To Matchmakers

With every first date that leads to nowhere or every non-relationship that ends up being a waste of your time, finding love can seem far from possible. It can also be pretty rough on your self-esteem if you continually put a lot of effort into dating…
By Kristine Fellizar

I Tried Venus' New Facial Hair Removal Device & Will Never Get My Upper Lip Area Waxed Again

I remember the first time I realized I was growing hair above my upper lip. It was when a very rude seventh grader decided to point it out in front of my friends and me during our lunch break. He wasn't wrong — just mean — and ever since then, I've b…
By Sara Tan

Here Are The Exact Steps To Take If You Want To Travel All The Time & Work Remotely

When I first decided I wanted to become a digital nomad — someone who travels non-stop while working remotely — I was terrified and unsure if I would actually go through with it. I worried my work would suffer from all the travel and time zone change…
By Suzannah Weiss

7 Ways To Celebrate Your 30th Birthday That Are Feminist AF

Turning 30 is a pretty major milestone; it's one of those birthdays where large parties, floods of presents and many bouquets from besotted admirers seem to be in order. And as a woman and a feminist, I'm here to offer some additional 30th birthday i…
By JR Thorpe

Here’s Everything Leaving & Coming To Netflix In April

As the virtual shelf life for non-original Netflix programs grows shorter and shorter, fans of the streaming service are bidding woeful goodbyes to their favorite titles left and right. So, for those who need some time to prepare, here's everything l…
By Angelica Florio

Is Amazon's Alexa Making Our Relationships Weird?

Earlier this year, I started dating a guy who was in a very codependent relationship with Alexa. Alexa helped this guy (I'll call him "Paul") decide where to eat dinner and reminded him to work out. Alexa handled his to-do lists, restocked his toile…
By Sophie Saint Thomas

You Can Get Too Faced Mascara & Tarte Lipstick For HALF OFF At Ulta This Month

It's finally here! Ulta's 21 Days of Beauty Sale runs from now through Saturday, April 7 and is the retailer's epic "event" of the year. The promotion features "Beauty Steals," which means 50 percent off specific products for a single day. It also in…
By Amy Sciarretto

7 Things My 20s Taught Me About Toxic Relationships

I'll be turning 30 in less than a week, and while I'm trying to get all the habits of my twenties out of the way ASAP, I'm also reflecting on the what I learned over the past decade. And top of the list is the lessons I learned about toxic relationsh…
By JR Thorpe

7 Surprising Things That Happened When I Went A Month Without Drinking

If someone asked you if you could take a break from drinking alcohol, would you be able to do it? You may think it’s no big deal to take a month off from drinking, or you may think it’s a *huge* deal, as alcohol seems to be the center of many social …
By Natalia Lusinski

I Wore 'Dad Shoes' For A Week & They Were SO Much Cooler Than I Thought They’d Be

It’s no secret that fashion loves a good polarizing trend. Not too long ago, Birkenstocks made their high fashion runway appearance at Céline and Crocs followed suit on the runways of Christopher Kane and Balenciaga. Now, it’s time for the "ugly" sne…
By Dale Arden Chong

8 Ways Younger Millennials Communicate That Older Millennials Don’t Get

When comparing the ways our parents grew up communicating and the way we all grew up communicating, it seems like their generation and ours grew up in a different world. The technology our parents grew up with was so basic, it's ancient in comparison…
By Kaitlyn Wylde

This Is The ONE Sign That Won’t Be Affected By Mercury Retrograde This Month

It really doesn't seem fair that one astrological sign can ever enjoy the benefit of escaping the wrath of Mercury retrograde — that is, of course, unless that sign is your own — but it happens. Occasionally, the stars just align in the right way for…
By Kaitlyn Wylde

Why My Boyfriend & I Started Couples Counseling 6 Months Into Our Relationship

Right away, Kurt and I agreed on almost everything. We had met through a mutual friend in 2015, but we didn't start dating until we came across each other on Bumble a few years later. That's when we discovered that we were on the same page when it ca…
By Rachel Simon

This Primer & Mascara Combo Literally Doubles The Length Of My Eyelashes

Even as someone who loves beauty, I was never been particularly passionate about finding the perfect mascara. And then I got lash extensions for the first time. While I enjoy the long, full lashes that lash extensions provide, I always found myself j…
By Olivia Muenter

I Accidentally Fell In Love With My Friend With Benefits & It's Painful

Against my better judgment, I have fallen in love with my friend with benefits. I think I may have fallen in love with him month ago, but being stubborn AF, I fought against those feelings, tooth and nail, and, when it was suggested by a couple close…
By Amanda Chatel

This Viral Post About A Woman Breastfeeding In Public Actually Has A Happy Ending For Once

And today in things that will warm even the coldest of hearts, we have this: A story recently posted to the r/TwoXChromosome subreddit about a dad’s response to his daughter shaming a breastfeeding parent is everything. Posted by Redditor u/starsonwi…
By Lucia Peters

These March Beauty Launches Require Your Immediate Attention

I write one of these beauty editorials every month (feel free to check out January and February 2018 if you're in need of even more products to shower yourself with). Sometimes, I get worried that there won't be enough newness to share — especially b…
By Amanda Richards

Here's How You’re Most Likely To Get Your Heart Broken, Based On Your Zodiac Sign

Getting your heart broken can be one of the most painful experiences you can have in your life. But if you're into astrology, being familiar with your zodiac sign can be pretty helpful. For instance, when you know the ways you're likely to get your h…
By Kristine Fellizar

How I Learned Losing Your Job Isn't The End Of The World

Two and a half years ago, I was taking a day off from my marketing job at a San Francisco tech startup to host a friend when I got a call from the CEO. Apparently, I'd missed a pretty big day: 80 percent of the company, including the whole sales and …
By Suzannah Weiss

Meghan Markle's First Appearance With The Queen Included An Homage To Princess Diana

Fashion pundits love keeping a close eye on what the women of the monarchy are wearing, especially when there's an overlap with Princess Diana's sense of style. We're nothing but nostalgic when it comes to Princess Di and her on-point aesthetic. Find…
By Marlen Komar

Why Arizona's Exit From 'Grey's Anatomy' Is A Huge Blow To The LGBTQ Community

Whenever I re-watch Grey's Anatomy, I don't start with Derek Shepherd waking up in Meredith's apartment after their first hookup. I start with Season 5, when Callie first meets Arizona in a bar. I start here, because I want to watch someone like me f…
By Martha Sorren

I Couldn't Find A Beauty Campaign With Plus Size Models, So I Made One Myself

In the fall of 2015, I visited relatives in my hometown, a small suburb of New Jersey. There isn't much to do there, apart from dining at Applebee's or hitting the mall. As a plus size woman, cruising through a shopping mall is a mixed bag. Certain d…
By Marie Southard Ospina

The 21 New Books That Goodreads Users Are Most Excited About This Spring

Despite the fact the Northeast is being pummeled by yet another storm that threatens to trap the region in snow and ice for eternity, winter is finally almost over, and you know what that means. No, I'm not talking about April showers or May flowers …
By Sadie Trombetta

If You’re Addicted To Rewatching ‘The Office,' There’s An Actual Reason For That

A few weeks ago, I tweeted that I was looking for fans of The Office who can't stop, won't stop rewatching the series, and that they should email me if they'd like to contribute to an article about their obsession. By the next morning, I had 32 messa…
By Lia Beck