A Refreshing Summer : 4 Summer refreshments to get you going

by: Iza Hernandez

In this summer heat, most of us would want to stay in the comforts of our air-conditioned room, or go to the nearest mall and window-shop with our student budgets (what budget?). But for those of you yearning for something to keep your head cool, here are a few Japanese refreshments keep you from drying out.

1.Ramune

(c) http://farfromhome.ducsu.com

A common sight during Japanese festivals in the summer, this carbonated drink comes in different flavors including original (lemon-lime), blueberry, cherry, melon, exciting flavors like wasabi, curry, and many more. It is available in Japanese convenience stores all around the metro.

In order to open a bottle, a device to push the marble inward is provided. The marble is pushed inside the neck of the bottle where it rattles around while drinking, sometimes making it hard for first-time drinkers because the marble would clog up the flow. But did you know, Ramune, in the early days, were actually sold in a bottle with a cork cap wound tight with wire to keep the cork from popping out. The current marble cap was invented by an Englishman named Hiram Codd, who found that a glass bead provided an easier way to cap the bottle than a cork.

As you pop open or should we say push open a cold bottle of ramune, remember this little trivia to share to your friends!

2. Calpis

(c) http://justhungry.com/sweet-cultured-taste-calpis

Another Japanese Beverage that is popular during the summer, Calpis is an uncarbonated softdrink that has a light, somewhat milky, and slightly acidic flavor, similar to plain or vanilla-flavored yogurt or Yakult.

You can buy both Calpis water, and Calpis Soda ( a carbonated and fizzier version of the former) in your local Japanese convenience store, but I suggest to buy the concentrate and here are two of the reasons why:

1.You can control the strength of the flavor

For those who want a slightly diluted taste, or a stronger taste, you can adjust it to your liking.

2. You can mix it with any other drink

Believe it or not, but Calpis goes well not just with water or sparkling water, but with milk as well. It tastes exactly like yogurt and it gives that sour kick to your beloved dairy. And oddly enough orange juice as well. But then again, this is up to you and your taste buds, but don’t be afraid to experiment!

So don’t be afraid to grab a glass of ice cold Calpis when you’re lazing around the house. You can make at least 8 glasses from one bottle of Calpis concentrate.

3.Kakigori

One of the faces of summer, the kakigori, or known in english as shaved ice. this frozen wonder is composed of, as its name states, shaved ice, flavored syrup, and condensed milk on top. But what is the difference between a kakigori, and your regular snow cone? Well, first of all, the consistency of the ice in a kakigori is fluffier and literally melts in your mouth compared to the shaved ice used in snow cones. Another notable difference is snow cones don’t have that “snow cap” or condensed milk resting atop the mountain of ice.

Masatami is one of the stalls you can see around that have a reasonable price if your cravings. Because admit it, who wouldn’t want to walk in the summer heat with this at hand.

4. Pocari Sweat

Pocari Sweat is an ionized sports drink that helps relieve you of dehydration. For some, it also tastes good! Not only does it supply the body it’s lost nutrients and electrolytes when sweating, it also has a catchy name that you will definitely remember.

But why is it called “Pocari Sweat”?

“Pocari” doesn’t really mean anything and was only coined due to it’s light and bright sound. Sweat on the other hand, was used by the manufacturers to show that it is a sports drink. Remember how it is a Japanese product and it was originally catered to the Japanese. So the sweat here meant that this drink provides all the nutrients lost from sweating. Of course to natives of the English language, this was taken humorously.

Pocari sweat can be bought in your local grocery or convenience store.

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