Pepsi Lime and Pepsi Vanilla aren’t really anything for the folks reading this in Western territories. After all, they’ve had Lime and Vanilla variants of other sodas before. So, Pepsi releasing those flavors out in the markets in their area is just business as usual. But for people like me who live in Asia, more specifically, the Philippines, they’re totally fresh and new! We’ve never had different flavors of Pepsi before just recently so they’re something that I had to try out!
Before I do start the review, I have to talk about how difficult it actually was to find these drinks. First off, they aren’t advertising Pepsi Lime and Pepsi Vanilla widely as far as I know. The reason why I know about them was because I saw a couple of kids drinking them around my local mall. I then went to the closest supermarket, assuming that’s where they got them. They didn’t carry it. I then went to a nearby 7-11; they didn’t have them either. I pretty much shrugged after that and totally forgot all about it. Then, after around a week or two later, I just popped into a different 7-11 and, lo and behold! They had tons of Pepsi Lime and Pepsi Vanilla! Really weird.
Now, for all you folks who are on diets or just are trying to avoid sugar, I have good news for you: both Pepsi Lime and Pepsi Vanilla are sugar-free sodas. Unfortunately, this means, for all you health nuts out there, both of them are laced with various chemicals and stuff. Hey, they have to make this sugar-free stuff taste sweet somehow! I really don’t like how vague some things are labeled here in the Philippines. Both Pepsi Lime and Pepsi Vanilla have practically the same ingredients written on them. That’s because they can get away with calling things in broad terms. I mean, the only difference between them is Pepsi Lime has “natural flavors” while Pepsi Vanilla has “artificial flavors.”
Despite the health risks behind whatever Pepsi considers to be “natural” and “artificial,” I still bought them for the purpose of giving my honest impressions on how they taste. I won’t be comparing them to “original” Pepsi because, well, Pepsi is always going to be Pepsi, no matter what. It’s kind of a “regular” flavor by now and I’ve gotten so used to its flavor, any slight change will be welcome to the standard formula. What I would like to do is actually compare the two to see if one of them is better than the other.
The first one I tried was Pepsi Lime. I was more curious as Pepsi also makes another lime flavored soda: 7-Up. Granted, 7-Up is a lemon-lime mixture and not a straight up lime flavored soda. Still, I kind of expected Pepsi Lime to taste a whole lot like 7-Up and, well, I guess I was half right. Both regular Pepsi and 7-Up are, simply put, sweet. However, Pepsi Lime kinda tastes like a little more acidic. You do taste the lime as there is a little sourness after the initial gulp, which can be off putting.
I can see some people who do take a swig of this and think there’s something wrong with the Pepsi he or she just drank at the start because you may not be able to put your finger on what’s different. However, once you do get over the initial shock, it does have a good subtle flavor that is rather enjoyable. It’s that hint of sour that does make you a little more curious and it does taste better after each and every sip I took of Pepsi Lime.
Next, I tackled Pepsi Vanilla. I actually had high hopes for this because this does combine two things that I like: soda and baked goods. Of course, the soda comes from the Pepsi but the “baked goods” part comes from vanilla since vanilla extract is usually a prime ingredient in things like cakes and cookies. And who doesn’t like cakes and cookies? In fact, I opened the bottle and poured some of it into my (plastic) glass and took a good whiff of it and, sure enough, there were notes of vanilla as the fizzy bubbles popped. Yes, I know I must’ve looked like a weirdo smelling a glass of soda but I just had to do it!
The vanilla explosion didn’t end with the smell as Pepsi Vanilla has a really intense vanilla flavor. It actually overpowers the original Pepsi taste and it leaves an aftertaste that lingers for quite a while. It does taste more “fun” and lively as the vanilla does make the sweetness seem more powerful. It does make me wonder why didn’t Pepsi make this its own label as kids would probably love it more than regular Pepsi. It’s basically a cream soda flavored Pepsi.
The strange thing is, despite Pepsi Vanilla combining two things that I like a whole lot, I actually like Pepsi Lime a little better. The problem with Pepsi Vanilla is that it just tastes sweet and nothing more. There isn’t any real surprise or variety with each sip. While it does taste good, especially the first time you drink it, Pepsi Vanilla soon loses its luster and, while you may not be sick of it after finishing an entire half liter bottle of the stuff, you won’t be looking to get another bottle in the near future afterwards.
Pepsi Lime, on the other hand, is a little more complex because of that twinge of sourness from the lime flavor. There’s a feeling of excitement and it tastes a little more “adult” because its not just sweet. In fact, I felt kind of sad that I finished the entire bottle because I wanted more. I had to refrain from getting another bottle, however, because, between the Pepsi Lime and Pepsi Vanilla, I already drank an entire liter of soda. I know it won’t elevate my blood sugar because they’re both sugar-free drinks but I pretty much set my limit to one liter of soda per day. I am an adult, you know!
Would I want Pepsi to keep making these sodas from now on? Honestly, I don’t know. While I like Pepsi Lime because it’s different from regular Pepsi and I’m sure younger kids will love Pepsi Vanilla because of how sweet it tastes, making them “regular” products would diminish what makes them feel like they’re special to the consumer. They’re an alternative to regular Pepsi and I don’t think Pepsi would like these “special” drink cutting them out of their very own market share. I wouldn’t mind them being a seasonal thing to keep them feel like they’re something unique. Too much of a good thing and all that, you know?
Have you tried Pepsi Lime and/or Pepsi Vanilla? Which do you think is better? Let me know in the comments section below!