"I'd like to know what a sweet-and-salty Pepsi tastes like," said no one ever.
Yet, someone at the Pepsi Headquarters must have muttered this as an afterthought, leading into a string of bad calls, questionable motives, and insufficient research and development, to bring us one Salted Caramel Pepsi for the public's taking.
The latest flavor to come barreling out of Pepsi's playbook of flavor oddities is one inspired by the 2017 holidays. And if you think back on this year, it only makes sense that Pepsi would pick 2017 to introduce the most questionable taste to a classic, "fine-as-it-is" soda pop.
And like nearly all of 2017's flops and squabbles, there is a clear division between "okay" and "not okay," squired by fans and haters who both have something to say: loudly, clearly and with hashtags.
One Instagram user gave the salty pop a whirl and came back with this verdict: "My palate wasn't ready for the subtle hint of eating ROLO's in a zoo bathroom. #nomegusta #pepsi #saltedcaramelpepsi #nope."
A similar song was sung by a Twitter user: "this tastes like watery pepsi that someone threw a single dirty caramel into."
Of the minority, which is (expectedly) only a few, a user wrote all but glowing reviews of Pepsi's latest flavor: "best Pepsi ever. Actually taste like salted caramel." Another person wrote, "OMG! Look at this new #Pepsi flavor. It taste like caramel popcorn XD."
The company said the salted-caramel variant blends the classic taste of cola with a caramel finish, but something about "caramel finish" in a salted caramel Pepsi suggests a weird, indescribable aftertaste. If odd, can't-put-your-finger-on-it flavors are your shtick, then Salted Caramel Pepsi is your go-to, my friend.
Coming to a gas station near you -- Salted Caramel Pepsi, basking in a refrigerator's illumination, not a beacon of the future of food and drink, but a forewarning.
In the words of one Twitter user: "Today I learned there is such a thing as salted caramel flavored Pepsi. And we wonder why this country is going to hell."