Sparkling Afternoon Tea Is A Safe Sham Champagne

Want to stay sober when the rest are falling over? Try Kirin's new Sparkling Afternoon Tea, the sham champagne made with tea for teetotalers!

The holidays present a number of social dilemmas for non-drinkers who want to get in the swing of things without going full lampshade. Non-alcoholic potables range from slop resembling kiddie pop to overly sweet fruit juices, so Kirin's new bottled beverage comes as a breath of fresh air - if you can get past the name.

Billed as the "Champagne of Tea", Sparkling Afternoon Tea is an interesting yet odd product just introduced by Kirin, one of Japan's largest brewers and distillers.

The 410ml (14fl.oz) plastic bottle it comes in won't fool anyone seeking a more potent punch but the label imagery does serve to reinforce the drink's suggested use as a bubbly without the trouble-y.

According to Kirin, Sparkling Afternoon Tea is made with Darjeeling tea, sugar, spices, acidic ingredients and vitamin C. Its pale golden tint and light carbonation give the look and fizz of real champagne. Retail cost is listed at 140 yen (about $1.60) per bottle. Those who are put off by the thought of carbonated tea should take it with a grain of salt (not literally) - Japan has seen a LOT of bizarre soft drinks and Nescafe paved the way in 2006 with a canned and bottled carbonated "Sparkling Coffee".

All in all, Kirin's Sparkling Afternoon Tea is a cool concept that should go over (and go down) well over the holidays. Time will tell, however, if it can continue to sell well the rest of the year. (via Gigazine)