That’s right, Pepsi is setting up shop—and surprisingly, it has little to do with the beverage itself.
At the soda company's first restaurant, to be called Kola House, the star of the show is the kola nut, the caffeinated fruit from which Pepsi Cola derives its flavor and name, according to the New York Times. Rather than cover the space with the Pepsi brand, Kola House will feature food and beverages inspired by the kola nut, along with a musical platform called "Live at Kola House" for live entertainment. While Pepsi has yet to decide on an executive chef or menu, they have cocktail “alchemist” Alex Ott brainstorming possible beverages to feature on the drinks menu, such as kola extract infused cocktails. It appears that Pepsi is attempting to separate itself from its usual sugary image to bolster up their new "Kola" brand.
Kola House will open a pop-up in San Francisco before the Super Bowl. At that “Modular Kola House” (or as everyone else in the world will call it: the Pepsi pop-up), they will be serving experimental dishes such as wagyu beef “kola” sliders, beef tartare with kola truffle aioli and cocktails with kola bitters.
The New York flagship will open in the Meatpacking district sometime this spring.