Japanese Snack Food Review: Ramune (strawberry)

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I’m beginning to believe that Ramune is the liquid Pocky, except not as good. And much wetter but certainly as chock full of different flavors as the king of stuff on a stick. Just the other day I noticed that they had repackaged the plain Ramune in Hello Kitty wrapping (which I was tempted to buy but didn’t since I’ve done plain already) so I thought I’d throw another Ramune up for the Blogaversary All Liquid August Review.

I’ve previously done Orange Ramune, Blue Hawaii Ramune, Kiwi Ramune and of course the Original flavor. Not one of them has been super stellar but I seem to have developed a compulsion to continue trying Ramune in hopes that at least one will be a nice, zesty and tasty carbonated treat. Thus, I bring you Strawberry.

I’d also like to apologize in advance because I totally forgot that I hate the taste of Red Pop, which is artificially flavored strawberry soda. I have no idea where my head was when I picked this up, other than “Oooo! Shiny! Strawberry! The Japanese can do the BOMB of strawberry flavoring when they set their mind to it”. What I should have been thinking was “Wait…this has artificial strawberry flavoring. Red Pop has artificial flavoring. Red Pop is the worst tasting thing on the face of this earth next to artificial banana and isopropyl alcohol” (don’t ask) and then picked up a different flavor. I didn’t on both accounts and now I have to be impartial to a flavor that tastes like a half and half cocktail of ASS and Sudafed liquid syrup.

Before I review (which I’m doing real time BTW and also doing my best to procrastinate because it whiffs like a half and half cocktail of ASS and liquid Sudafed) I wanted to point out a couple things. The entire ingredients list is: grape sugar, Artificial flavor, citric acid and FD&C Red No. 40. Notice the lack of sugars stacked on top of each other? THAT’s a first for Ramune. Either grape sugar (and What?!??) is the king daddy of all sweeteners or they have decided to cut back on the sweety-sweet. I’d say bravo that as Ramune has always been a tad on the sugary side but why did they have to do it for Red Pop? Today of all days I could have used the sweety-sweet to drown out the Half and Half ASS and liquid Sudafed cocktail. The other packaging note is (are?) the directions.

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Look! Finally, a how to for the Ramune clueless. THANK YOU!

OK, it’s time for the inevitable. Down the hatch!

Oh.

Well then.

Right.

1. Still hating the bottle construction. Although if I drink enough Ramune I might just adapt or get used to it.

2. It’s…nicely not so sweet. That’s refreshing. I’d say this particular Ramune is sweeter than a flavored soda water but not quite soda pop (pop, soda, cola, whatever) sweet.

3. Damnit, I just dribbled Strawberry Ramune all over my chin. Stoopid bottle drinking platform.

4. The carbonation, which has been Ramune’s big hang up so far, isn’t stellar but it’s bubbly enough to barely make the cut onto the soda pop team (pop, soda, cola, whatever). I think the Strawberry is similar to the orange but a tad tinier with the bubblation (new word!) and a bit more with the fizzy bite. It’s really working that line between flat and carbonated though.

5. I’ve decided to try Ramune with ice this trip out –

5a. Have I mentioned yet that I HATE the gerbil ball drinking platform?

5 cont. -and I’d recommend against it. I think I poured off what carbonation it had when it went from the bottle to the glass and now it’s gone unappetizingly flat. The cold has really brought out the Red Pop flavor too.

6. Finally. The flavor. It tastes much less like an ASS and liquid Sudafed cocktail than I expected it to, given the smell. It has one pow’ful chemical strawberry odor to it but only a mild chemical strawberry taste. If they suddenly stopped making every single flavor of pop but Red Pop, I’d actually drink Strawberry Ramune. That’s got to be plus pea points there.

Wow. I’d say this was every bit as good as the Orange, if you are a Strawberry pop lover, and probably better given that I can actually drink it without gagging. I’d usually knock pea points off for the presence of CHEMICAL STRAWBERRY 512 but to me, all strawberry pop tastes like various nasty chemical strawberry flavorings so I can’t really tell. Strawberry Ramune was acceptably carbonated, barely, and it was much less sweety-sweet, which was rather delightful to experience, and then there was the decent chemical strawberry ASS and liquid Sudafed cocktail thing going on. I think I’m going to go with a middle of the road rating and add that you might think about adding a half pea or maybe even a titch more (if your pea system fractionalizes down further than mine) if you like strawberry flavored pop. That leaves Strawberry Ramune with a

Rating

of 3 Wasabi Peas out of a possible 5.

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