Monday, March 17, 2008

Rojita | Red Nectar Of The Nicaraguans

The first thing attracting me to this soda bottle is obvious. Upon traveling to a local Spanish market on W. Waters Ave., I saw young Rojita (Raw-hee-tuh) sitting there all alone in between the Sprites and Mountain Dews. She was like a motherless child begging for someone to pick her up. I mean, look at the face!

(Note: I say "her" in much the same way old dudes swagger on about their classic cars. The longnecked clear bottle with the Cadillac-red beverage sloshing around inside. Of course when I mention Rojita for now on it'll be impossible to separate the soda itself from the precious little girl with the half-smile. If you don't see what I mean yet, you surely will later.).

I got in my car and boy was it warm out today, so I immediately reached for my bottle opener and drank the thing, which seemed more in line with Coca-Cola's Fanta Roja than Big Red. Unfortunately, it had a strange rubber-y taste that made it difficult to finish. My roommate had a sip too, and said something about a mission trip.

It was difficult to find much information on this strange brew, which I have the feeling'll be the case with plenty of the sodas reviewed in the future.

This much I know: it's a popular local drink in León, Nicaragua that first appeared in the early 70s, among the likes of Milca and Kola Shaller. Someone said the company was bought by Pepsi at one point though I can't find proof of this anywhere. If you wanna find the stuff in the U.S., you're probably out of luck unless you're a resident of Florida. I'd check the corner store first. Then if no luck there, some distributors can be found in Miami, such as Productos El Ranchito.

You might be wondering what the cute but non-P.C. pioneer girl with the feather headband has to do with Nicaragua or soda. What does she have to do with anything? Well, if 5% of the population in Nicaragua consists of Native Americans, take a guess. It's pretty offensive, and didn't occur to me until well after finishing my drink. Since "roja" is Spanish for red, "Rojita" must mean "Little Red."

Now when I think of that cute half-smile I just feel sad.










(photo courtesy of Tracy Blacher via flickr)

1 comment:

the lion said...

Little Red...weird Nicaraguan bastard child of Big Red

or

Little Red™ brand Riding-Hood Juice®