Review: Pepsi Vanilla


Pepsi Vanilla was launched in 2003 as a direct response to Vanilla Coke, which came out a year earlier.

Pepsi Vanilla

At the time of release, I tried it and gave it a thumbs-up! “Truthfully, it tastes very similar to Vanilla Coke… except that it’s, well, Pepsi. So there is obviously that Pepsi taste… much like with Pepsi Twist… there is Pepsi with a hint of lemon. Their marketing message is ‘smooth vanilla cola’… I would agree with that… it did taste very smooth going down.”

Pepsi went with their traditionally anti-Coke-pattern of naming. Meaning that if the first product was “Vanilla Coke”, they would move the flavor name to the end and call it “Pepsi Vanilla”. Interestingly, most folks still casually call it “Vanilla Pepsi”. Whatever works, I guess. The color scheme on the bottle proclaims the standard Pepsi blue look… with the creamy yellow coloring added to visualize the vanilla element (just like Coke did with their vanilla product). I have long felt that Pepsi Vanilla had more vanilla flavor when compared to the Coke version of this flavor.

Interestingly, Coke has already formally discontinued Vanilla Coke. This has been replaced by Coke Black Cherry Vanilla. Pepsi has announced that they will be discontinuing Pepsi Vanilla during Summer 2006.