tuKola – “your cola”
Anyone who has been to Cuba will know the taste of Tu Kola. And love it too. Because the tuKola is something very special. The answer to Coca Cola and Pepsi. Because, certainly after the embargo, there was no more American soft drinks in Cuba. Now the Cubans did not want to give up their soft drinks. And therefore came on the market with their own cola. In the beginning there were the Cola brands TropiCola and FiestaCola. And since the 1980s also tuKola – so “your cola”. The other two brands no longer exist.
Naturally Cola is also the basic ingredient for the Cuba Libre. Where the cola mainly provides the color. A Cuba Libre contains 80% cola and 20% rum. Everything that is plant-based (lime, mint, etc.) does not belong in this mix drink.
Coke from the tap
In the past there was also coke on tap. You went to the store with an empty bottle and it was filled from a coke tank. The whole thing cost 1-2 pesos per liter. What exactly was in it, we cannot reconstruct now, but it looked like coke.
Of course there was once also a Coca-Cola factory in Cuba. After the revolution it became nationalized. And it was produced according to the same recipe. So if we compare it to the then Coca-Cola (and Cuba has all the ingredients together), the tuKola should taste exactly like the original Coca Cola from the fifties.
TuKola is produced by Los Portales SA in Pinar del Rio. And distributed by Ciego Montero, the “Blinde Jager”. Ciego Montero is a joint venture between the Cuban state and Nestlé. Nestlé mineral water came to the company after San Pellegrino was purchased.
tuCola is also available in a light version, which is currently hard to find.
If you read about Coca Cola, you will find that Cuba is one of the few countries where no Coca Cola is sold. Except North Korea. However, that is wrong. Coca Cola is sold, but not produced in Cuba. There is Coca Cola, which is mainly imported from Mexico and is therefore a lot more expensive. Officially it is not there but in Cuba it can be bought almost everywhere.