Pepsi Cola was originally called "Brad's Drink"

Pepsi is a carbonated soft drink invented in 1893 as "Brad's Drink" by Caleb Bradham, who sold the drink in his drugstore in New Bern, North Carolina.

Pepsi Cola was originally called "Brad's Drink"
© Photo by Ja San Miguel on Unsplash

It was renamed Pepsi-Cola in 1898 - "Pepsi" because it was advertised as a remedy for dyspepsia (indigestion), and "Cola" in reference to the cola flavour. Some have also suggested that "Pepsi" might be a reference to the digestive enzyme pepsin, but pepsin itself was never used as an ingredient in Pepsi-Cola. In 1961, the name was shortened to Pepsi.

The original recipe also contained sugar and vanilla. Bradham wanted to create a drink that was appealing, stimulated digestion and gave energy.

During the Great Depression, Pepsi gained popularity after a 12-ounce (355 ml) bottle was introduced in 1934. Before that, Pepsi and Coca-Cola sold their drinks in 6.5-ounce (192 ml) portions for about $0.05 per bottle. In a time of economic crisis, the campaign succeeded in improving Pepsi's status. From 1936 to 1938, Pepsi-Cola's profits doubled.
In this way, Pepsi's triumphal march began.