A refreshing soft drink from Switzerland, Pepita used to be a special Sunday treat for children. Here are 10 facts about this Swiss carbonated beverage that has become a cult classic.
1. Pepita is listed in the national directory of traditional Swiss food products maintained by Patrimoine Culinaire Suisse (Culinary Heritage of Switzerland). Considered one of the first Swiss soft drinks, a bottle of Pepita features a parrot logo on its label.
2. Eptinger introduced a grapefruit soda in 1942. Located in the northwest corner of Switzerland, this company named it Sissa Grapefruit, after the town where it was first made: Sissach, Switzerland.
3. Founded in 1899, the same family has owned and managed Eptinger for four generations. Two friends started the company, which specializes in mineral water. Sine 2015, the husband and wife team of Damaris and Matthias Buchenhorner have taken the lead.
4. Herbert Leupin, the celebrated Swiss graphic designer, has been credited as the “inventor of Pepita.” Leupin was apparently friends with the company’s former owner, Edmond Buchenhorner.
5. Pepita means “seed” (a.k.a. “pip”) or “nugget” in Spanish. According to Patrimoine Culinaire Suisse, Leupin came up with the name and the parrot logo.
6. The original Pepita contains grapefruit juice from concentrate (12%). Other ingredients include: sugar, carbon dioxide, acidifier (E330), preservative (E202), natural flavorings, stabilizers (E412, E440, E414) and antioxidant: ascorbic acid (E300).
7. Pepita comes in four different flavors: Grapefruit (the original), Lite (does not contain sugar), Citro (a lemon soda that used to be called “Sissa Citro”) and Orange.
8. This nonalcoholic beverage can be enjoyed on its own or used for making cocktails. You can also mix it with beer for a refreshing panaché.
9. Eptinger celebrated Pepita’s 60th anniversary with a redesign of its label in 2009, returning to the original look with Leupin’s parrot mascot. If you would like to purchase Pepita, you can find it at several supermarkets in Switzerland or online via Eptinger’s website.
10. In recent years, Gelati Gasparini has started offering Pepita-Sorbet. You can find ice cream and sorbet products from Gelati Gasparini at various locations in German-speaking Switzerland, the region of the country where Pepita seems to be the most popular. Please note: You should check in advance to see if these sites specifically carry the Pepita-Sorbet.
- Die mächtigen Familien der Region: Heute Damaris und Matthias Buchenhorner, Inhaber der Mineralquelle Eptingen AG, Barfi.ch (June 5, 2017).
- In Eptingen ist Geschichte greifbar, Basler Zeitung (August 25, 2015)
- Pepita, Patrimoine Culinaire Suisse
- Pepita (official website)