Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Retro 7up Glass Bottles in 2011 !

Certain trends are just awesome. My favorite trend of the past couple of years would have to be retro themed packaging. If you want to make your product appear hip and cool all a company really needs to do is slap on an old logo and a gigantic Limited Edition sticker and you got yourself a formula for success. Don't believe me? Walk into any gas station across America and you will notice a choice between alternative flavors of Mountain Dew and Pepsi now in a nifty little throwback bottle. Keep looking and you'll find that Doritos have brought back the long defunct Nacho flavor and is selling it in a package straight out of the early 60's. I would even go so far as to call the return of Mountain Dew Pitch Black part of this current retro trend.

Therefore I do not find it the least bit surprising that 7up has decided to join the retro bandwagon. But 7up has managed to differentiate themselves from the pack by not only releasing a retro version of their popular soft drink but also by going the extra mile by bringing back the old school glass bottles. For my younger readers out there, allow me to explain. Years ago when you went to a gas station or convenience store to purchase soda you had two options. One could go for the 12 ounce metal can, just like the ones sold in stores today or you could get the second option, the 16 ounce glass bottle. The glass bottles were fantastic, they where big, thick, and heavy. They kept your soda colder and required a specialized device to unscrew the top. I approve anything that requires specialized devices in order to open it. On top of all of that soda just simply tastes better in a glass container. Go ahead and ask anyone old enough to have drank from them regularly, we will all tell you that its true.

I loved the old glass soda bottles and they will always hold a special place with the rest of my childhood memories. So naturally they were slowly fazed out over the years until they all together vanished from store shelves. Astute readers out there may be able to find the mini-glass bottles that Coca Cola sells (in mostly overseas markets) but those are really quite tough to come by around here. Therefore I really do not feel like they count. The retro 7up Glass Bottles on the other hand, these totally count. So let's take a look at another awesome new product for Summer 2011! 

Retro 7Up is sold by the pack. When you decide to purchase one (and lets face it there is no way that your not!) you get six 12 ounce glass bottles all in one old school cardboard carrying case. My favorite part of Retro 7Up is by far how cool these six packs look. It is a brilliant shade of green combined with a slightly duller shade of red which all comes together to form a package that almost would have been better suited for a late November early December Holiday release. Then again, I tend to think that everything would be better suited if it was released around Christmas. Being sold in six packs like these really helps differentiate Retro 7Up from an already overcrowded soda pop isle. Seeing these new glass bottles sitting three by three in that cardboard case creates a product that I simply must have. This is especially important when you are competing with Pitch Black and seventeen hundred other flavors of Mountain Dew. Sometimes its nice to look a little different and I give 7Up all the credit in the world for creating a splendid package design that I plan on keeping for years to come. With that said Retro 7Up isn't without a couple minor flaws.

For starters the size of the new bottles are off. As you can see in the photo Retro 7Up is slightly smaller than its old school counterpart. I am sure there is a perfectly rational explanation for this so I am not really going to count that against Retro 7Up but I would have been willing to pay twice as much for six full sized glass bottles. Another finer point that a lot of people might miss about Retro 7Up is that everything on them... from the large 7Up logo on the front, to the nutritional information on the back, all the way up to the smaller 7Up logo on the neck of the bottle are actually stickers. Simple stickers stuck on a generic green bottle. This is kind of a big deal to those of us on the collectors market. The old school bottles actually had all this information either etched or painted onto them.When you set the two side by side Retro 7Up feels much cheaper than the original glass bottles. Those stickers also pose another problem as condensation can cause them to peel right off. Just the simple act of keeping a bottle in the refrigerator will in all likelihood cause the label to bubble and distort if one is not careful.

However none of this really matters because unlike certain other Limited Edition novelties, in which the word "limited" is used with a wink and a nod from the company knowing as well as you do its going to be sold in stores for the next year and a half... I simply cannot see Retro 7Up lasting for more than a couple months. At best. I have only been able to find it in one location and that was a grocery store. Even there Retro 7Up required its own special rack, due to the odd size and shape of the package. Then it wasn't even in the same isle as all the other flavors of soda, it was sort of off to the side in its own little world. To make matters worse, the entire display only had about four of them on it. Thus making me feel like one of the lucky few to snag one in the town that I live in!

If you are in the market for Retro 7Up quantities seem limited at best. But you know what I would not have it any other way. Half the fun of collecting items such as these is tracking them down. If I may veer off subject here for a minute a perfect example of this would be Mountain Dew Pitch Black. It has gone though an odd cycle since I first wrote about it a couple months ago. It had a limited initial run. Then it seemingly ran out and I had to trudge through multiple gas stations to get ahold of one. Then strangely supplies increased to the point that even oddball Dollar Surplus Stores are carrying it. Don't get me wrong, I'm glad that Pitch Black has became so readily available but the fun of tracking it down is now officially gone. Just by the very nature of the way its being sold Retro 7up is destined to be an elusive product that few will ever be able to truly enjoy. Or maybe the stores around here just suck at displaying it. I do live in Iowa, after-all.

Regardless, I think everyone should try there best to get out there and find some Retro 7Up. Even if you do not consider yourself part of the collectors market. If you are so inclined you can even opt out of the glass bottle package and go for the standard issue twelve pack of cans. These come in nifty little white zebra striped or the equally cool checkerboard design. These cans are very cool in there own right and probably deserve there own respective entry here on the website. In the end I find it simply amazing just how much forethought 7Up has put into this promotion. 7Up isn't a product that has really changed a whole lot over they years, other than then obvious industry switches (from glass to plastic bottles) and a couple short lived mascots, the taste has remained largely the same. I do not feel a highly nostalgic connection to 7Up yet I have just spent a couple thousand words proclaiming my love for their new glass bottles. That goes a long way in showing that a properly thought out promotion like Retro 7Up will win every single time! So thank you 7Up for creating these awesome retro glass bottles for Summer 2011!

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