Drinking Ramune Japanese Soda for the First Time
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Ramune Soda is one of the most popular brands of carbonated beverages in Japan, famous around the world for its assortment of fruit flavors and unique glass bottle design. Opening a bottle of Ramune is a bit of a ritual. Instead of a lid or cap, a marble stopper and plunger mechanism holds the drink in place. When the wrapper is peeled off it releases a small plastic plunger. The plunger is used to push down and dislodge the marble which is held in place partially by carbonation. Two indentations in the glass bottle hold the marble and prevent it from rolling forward while drinking or pouring your Ramune into a glass.
Ramune is an icon of Japanese pop culture, and has become a popular beverage of choice in American arcades specializing in Japanese import games and Otaku life.
Original Ramune soda has a light, highly-carbonated “lemon-lime” taste not too dissimilar from Sprite or 7-UP, but with noticeably less sugar. Ramune soft drinks typically come in two sizes; 200ml “Regular” and 410ml “Giant Ramune” (pictured).
STEP 1: Set the bottle on a stable, flat surface. (e.g. a table or a counter.) Preferably something that will not allow the bottle to slip out from under your hands.
STEP 2: Remove the plastic wrapping from the bottle’s cap. Throw it into a trash receptacle.
STEP 3: The hard plastic piece on top of the bottle separates in two – use your thumb to push out the center part (the plunger), separating it from the outer ring. Throw the outer ring into the trash.
STEP 4: Place the plunger on top of the marble, with the flat, round side facing up.
STEP 5: Use one hand to grip the bottle securely. Place the heel of the other hand on the plunger.
STEP 6: Making sure to concentrate pressure in a solely downward direction, push forcefully on the plunger until the marble drops into the bottle. Do not release or change the direction of pressure.
STEP 7: Continue holding the plunger against the opening of the bottle for approximately 5 seconds, or until the pop has visibly settled.
STEP 8: Remove and throw away the plunger.
STEP 9: When drinking the soda, hold the bottle so that the indentations in the neck are facing down to catch the marble. This will prevent it from stopping the flow of liquid.
STEP 10: Enjoy!