Pepsi has waded into treacherous waters over the last two years. Pepsi x Cracker Jack? Nitro Pepsi? PEEPSI??? We’ve seen all kinds of novelty cola flavors come and go over the years, so we approach each new Pepsi with a big ol’ dose of skepticism. But now, Pepsi has debuted a new variation we can get behind: Pepsi-Roni Pizza, a limited-edition pizza topped with Pepsi-infused pepperoni.
It all started when Pepsi commissioned a very scientific, highly accurate, certainly data-driven survey of Pepsi consumers who also enjoy pizza. The brand asked participants if drinking Pepsi enhanced their pizza-eating experience; 90% of respondents said yes, which led Pepsi to declare itself the “perfect beverage complement to pizza.” Thus, Pepsi is releasing the Pepsi-Roni Pizza this Friday, May 20.
The pizza was developed as a partnership with the Culinary Institute of America (CIA) Consulting, a business unit of The Culinary Institute of America. Per a press release sent to The Takeout, the pepperoni is “infused with the rich caramel notes and brown spices with the citrusy pop of Pepsi cola.” Specifically, it features a Pepsi Zero Sugar reduction instead of the water typically used in pepperoni preparation.
“The concept is quite simple. Pepperoni brings a smokey spiciness and the Pepsi adds a citrusy sweetness,” David Kamen, director of client experience for CIA Consulting, said in the release. “It’s an intriguing combination we think pizza fans will be excited to try.”
Sounds delish, although I can’t stop thinking about that Pepsi consumer survey. I’m picturing Pepsi officials holding participants hostage, plying them with PEEPSI, requiring them to identify Pepsi as the perfect complement to pizza before they can go home to their families.
Either way, I’m down to clown on some Pepsi-Roni. Honestly, we need more cola-infused cured meat products. As any meat lover knows, cola is an excellent complement to super-savory dishes. Consider Coca-Cola brisket, made with a cola marinade that lends a tangy, mouthwatering flavor to the meat.
Pepsi is releasing the pizza this Friday, May 20 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. EST. Unfortunately, the pizza is only available at Made in New York Pizza’s West Village location while supplies last. If you can’t make it to Manhattan on Friday, you won’t get to try the pizza—but you can score a free Pepsi if you really put your mind to it. (Follow the rules outlined on Pepsi’s website.) Of course, you could always make your own Pepsi-infused pepperoni. Just make sure you’re working with classic can of Pepsi, because nobody wants a PEEPSI pepperoni.