Pepsi Targets Thirsty Groups With Flagship Cola Bar, Event Space

Coke or Pepsi? In some circles, it's a more contentious debate than even "Democrat or Republican?" Whichever side you're on, though, a new cola-themed venue will attempt to recruit you to Team Pepsi.

Announced last week, the venue -- known as Kola House -- will be an "experimental kola bar, restaurant, lounge, and event space" dedicated to celebrating the kola nut that's used to make cola-flavored soft drinks, according to PepsiCo, which will open its flagship Kola House this spring in New York's Meatpacking District.

Designed by Lisle Richards and Eric Marx of noted hospitality group The Metric -- designers of the Gilded Lily, The Wayfarer, and others -- Kola House will serve craft cocktails and artisanal food plates showcasing the kola nut.

In addition, it will host "Live at the Kola House," a live-music series featuring acoustic performances produced in partnership with Live Nation.

"Through curating and producing the live music series for Pepsi, guests at Kola House will enjoy distinctive engagements by not-to-be-missed artists," said Darin Wolf, Live Nation's executive vice president of media and sponsorship.

Pepsi plans to extend the Kola House brand nationally with a modular series that will replicate the experience of the flagship location at key events, the first of which is an exclusive VIP space in San Francisco during Super Bowl 50.

"We wanted to create a modern hub for consumers to share social and immersive experiences that were anchored in the exploration of our cola's artisanal craft and flavor," said Seth Kaufman, chief marketing officer, PepsiCo North America Beverages. "The Kola House represents a new space for us to support our consumer-first approach to drive authenticity and innovation around our beverage offerings and ideals."

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