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5 Beverages Your Grandma Drinks That You’ve Never Tried

Do you remember which beverages your grandma used to drink? 

Many of her beloved refreshments are still on the market today, but others have gone extinct. From Folgers to Orange Julius, we’ll look into her favorites.

Join us for a stroll down memory lane as we recall yesterday’s most popular drinks.

Let’s dive in!

Folgers Calls Itself Grandma’s Favorite Drink

The company Folgers has been struggling to stay relevant with young audiences. Younger generations think of this coffee with nostalgia, remembering their grandparents brewing a fresh pot each morning. In an interview with NPR, Folger’s chief marketing officer said, “many consumers were dismissing Folgers as their grandmother’s coffee…we could certainly see it in our sales numbers.” 

Then, the marketing team had an idea. They began leaning into this perception, embracing the nostalgia in their most recent ads. Yes, your grandma drank Folgers, and you should too. Who cares if the coffee brand has a reputation as a drink for old ladies?

The coffee is cheap, delicious, and effective. 

What Is Folgers?

You’ve probably heard the jingle, “The best part of waking up is Folgers in your cup!” But did you know that Folgers has been around for almost 170 years?

James Folger moved to San Francisco during the gold rush of 1849 and began working with coffee. He worked his way up to owning his very own coffee company. Folgers coffee gained notoriety for being consistently delicious because James tasted every shipment of beans and would only purchase the best ones. He strove to make money, but more importantly, to make good coffee.

The company relocated to New Orleans in 1960, and in 1984, the famous jingle was written. After Hurricane Katrina in 2005, Folgers helped its employees find temporary housing and became the first major industry to reopen in the city. Today the company sells more coffee in the United States than any other company.

Folgers gained traction in the 1850s by selling consistently delicious coffee. Today’s consumers expect consistency from every brand. So how exactly has Folgers stayed on top?

The company has done excellent marketing throughout the years, notably creating its catchy jingle in 1984. Recently, Folgers has leaned into their perception of being grandma’s coffee, using nostalgia as a selling point.

Realizing that younger audiences desire different coffee, the brand launched a new line of dark roasts called 1850 Black Gold. Folgers keeps consumer desires at the forefront, impressively keeping the brand relevant since the gold rush. 

5 Grandma Drinks You’ve Never Tried

We’ve all heard of and probably tried Folgers coffee. Now let’s look at other beverages that you may have seen your grandma drink.


Food scientists created and trademarked Tang in 1957, and it became available to the public in 1959. This pouch of powder intended to be mixed with water provided a way to get orange juice on the table. Tang’s shelf stability was a real selling point. The powder doesn’t go rancid and even has more vitamin C than the real thing.

This drink powder’s popularity didn’t boom, however, until NASA decided to send it to space in 1962. Astronauts found the beverage easy to mix and consume while in zero gravity. 

Tang became popular again in the 1990s with commercials featuring an orangutan. In recent years, as the country leans into health trends, the drink has lost popularity in the United States. The brand still exists, and you can purchase it at nearly any grocery store if you want to try it. 


During World War II, the United States established a trade embargo or refused to do business with Nazi Germany. Since Germany couldn’t get their hands on Coca-Cola syrup, the head of the country’s Coca-Cola company created a new soda, Fanta. Germans bought the beverage as a sugar substitute due to wartime sugar rationing, and the company discontinued the product in 1945.

In 1955, Coca-Cola relaunched the soda using fresh oranges for flavor. The soda performed so well on the market that the company worried it would overtake its original cola in sales. 

Today, you can enjoy different kinds of Fanta around the world. This soda contains corn syrup in the United States, while it has real sugar in Mexico. In the UK, Fanta has less sugar to skirt certain taxes, and in other European countries, the drink tastes like elderberries. 


Claud Hatcher began bottling ginger ale and rootbeer in knee-high bottles in 1905. In 1928, his fruit-flavored beverages became extremely popular, and he adopted the company name Nehi (pronounced knee-high). They made many soda flavors, including orange, grape, and peach. After some reformulation, Hatcher changed the name again, in 1955, to Royal Crown Cola, known today as R.C. Cola. 

Your grandma probably grew up with his drink, and today you might still be able to find some Nehi at your local specialty soda shop. I’ve seen it at old-fashioned candy shops and in grocery stores tucked away amongst glass soda bottles.

Orange Julius

If you went to the mall in the 1990s, you’ve probably seen an Orange Julius. Did you know that this chain beverage restaurant is nearing its 100 birthday?

In 1926, founder Julius Freed began selling orange juice with tremendous success. His friend Bill Hamlin created a creamier version in 1929, which increased sales substantially. Orange Julius stands started popping up all over the country at fairs and other events. The restaurant conglomerate IHOP purchased Orange Julius in 1967 and sold it to Dairy Queen in 1987. 

Today you can visit Orange Julius at over 300 locations across the United States for one of their delicious, frothy juices. 


In 1963, bright pink Coca-Cola cans hit the shelf. TaB, the company’s first diet soda, became popular with customers who wanted to keep tabs on their weight. The drink went through several facelifts throughout the years before being discontinued in 2020.

In the 1970s, Coca-Cola released other flavors of the sugar-free beverage, including root beer, black cherry, and lemon-lime. Caffeine-free TaB came out in 1983, and TaB Clear in 1992. In 2006, TaB Energy, also known as TaB Fabulous, became very popular. Though Coca-Cola’s Diet Coke outperformed TaB in sales, the latter had a cult following until its discontinuation.

Are These Grandma Drinks Worth Trying?

While we wouldn’t recommend cooking with Fanta or substituting Tang for orange juice in the morning, we suggest tasting these grandma drinks if you can find them.

Stop by an Orange Julius for a sip of nostalgia, or peruse the classic soda selection for Nehi at your local candy shop. Sure, your grandma drank Folgers, and you should try it too.

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