News center
Our company strives to provide superior goods, on-time order fulfillment, and personalized assistance.

Melon Soda Is A Popular Sweet Drink You'll Find Across Japan

Feb 19, 2024

You may not have tried it, but you've surely seen it. Melon soda is a popular sweet drink found all across Japan — however, it's also commonly found in Japanese food stores and restaurants in the U.S. The little green cans started appearing in the '50s and were popularized in the '70s when they were used in an old-fashioned Japanese favorite: cream sodas.

These were once found only in the country's many cream-soda-serving kissatens, or cafes inspired by the original tea houses of Japan, where they were made by hand with a blend of club soda and bright green melon syrup. Now, they can be found as commonly as on the McDonald's menu. While untraditional, the drink's sweet, fragrant, and bright green color goes as well with your McDouble as it does your ramen.

But why melon? Due to the expensive labor costs in the country, melon in Japan tends to be more costly. Thus, the fruit is associated with luxury, and soda isn't the only item that's been elevated by it. Ice cream, candy, and even bread are just a few food items that have been graced by the sweet, fruity, and aromatic taste of the beloved melon. However, melon soda is one that's particularly been engrained into Japanese culture — and if you try any of the country's melon-flavored foods and drinks, the soda should be it. Crisp, carbonated, colorful, and refreshing, you may be hooked from your first sip.

If you simply want a soda and don't necessarily need the full cafe or cream soda experience, you can purchase a can of melon soda from any convenience store or vending machine in Japan. Do note that they're more popularly found throughout the summer months. If going to Japan isn't in your plans, however, you can also just head to your local Asian food store. There, you'll find any one of the many brands that make the drink — there are more recognizable brands like Fanta and Sunkist, as well as Japanese brands like Sangaria and Ramune.

You may also be lucky enough to find any one of these options on the menus of local Japanese restaurants. In this case, you'll have the gift of getting to enjoy your Japanese melon soda alongside some Japanese food. The sweet, crisp flavor is great for balancing out the flavors of spicy ramen as well as the strong umami flavors that are so cognizant of Japanese cuisine. It may not come off as particularly melon-flavored because it is so mild; however, the sweet carbonation makes it a fitting option for any of your typical soda scenarios, whether that involves pairing it with pizza or a bag of chips.

To make Japanese melon cream soda, you can start by either buying a can of it or making the soda with several ingredients — you just need to be sure to have vanilla ice cream on hand. For the canned version, just pour it in a glass over ice and then add a scoop of vanilla ice cream. For a homemade version, you need about 3 tablespoons of melon syrup, some club soda, a scoop of vanilla ice cream, and ice all poured in a glass and topped with maraschino cherries if desired.

If you happen to visit Japan and want to try this iconic combo, many of the retro cream soda shops that were popular in the '70s are still there, making a memorable experience for anyone visiting. You may even get lucky and stumble across a kissaten like Kamiya Bar in Tokyo, where you can order it alongside a serving of spaghetti or Shin Setsu, another cream soda shop that serves it with its famous thick and fluffy pancakes.