Calpico Strawberry: Tart and Sweet but Still Refreshing


If you’re a fan of delicious and fruity beverages, then you’ve got to try Calpico Strawberry! This Japanese cultured milk drink is part of the Calpis brand, which is known for creating some of the most fun and milky drinks out there. This drink does not disappoint!

From its pastel pink color to its sweet and refreshing taste, this drink is sure to leave you feeling satisfied. It has a fluid, watery texture that’s perfect for quenching your thirst on a hot summer day. And the flavor profile? It’s an amazing combination of the Calpico yogurt flavor with hints of sour milk and a long lasting tart strawberry aftertaste.

Flavor Profile

Milky Drinks rating: 3.5 / 5

Calpico Strawberry in a transparent espresso glass with snow peas in foreground and background, on a peach colored background
Calpico Strawberry poured into a glass – note the lovely pastel pink color

I used to love Calpico drinks for their sweet and semi-sour flavor, which had so much complexity and interesting flavors. But as my palate has changed, I typically like something more creamy and less sweet. Calpico Strawberry is a drink that definitely leans on the sweeter side. However, despite its sweetness, it doesn’t have that synthetic taste that some fruity drinks can have. Instead, it’s a well-balanced blend of sweetness and the tangy, yogurt flavor of Calpico Original.

The liquid in the Calpico Strawberry drink is a lovely pastel pink. It connotates light, fruity and refreshing summer days with a feminine flair. The drink itself is non-carbonated, sweet and easy to drink. The texture is light and watery, just like all other Calpico drinks and flavors. 

Since the drink contains milk, definitely store in a cool place and keep it chilled. I find that the colder the drink, the more easy it is to consume!

As soon as you twist open the cap of Calpico Strawberry you notice a sweet and floral aroma that is like taking a walk through a flower garden on a sunny day. Upon drinking, the Strawberry notes are excellently blended into the cultured milk flavor, creating a perfect balance of sweet and tart. The strawberry flavor is not overwhelming in its artificial flavoring and blends harmoniously with the yogurt taste.

As you continue drinking, the floral notes remain upfront while the yogurt flavor takes over as an aftertaste. The drink doesn’t become cloyingly sweet, allowing you to enjoy the full bottle without feeling overwhelmed. It’s a great drink to reward yourself after a hard workout, or to simply indulge in as a sweet treat on a hot day.

Interesting fact is that Calpico Strawberrycontains lactic acid bacteria, which is used in the creation of most Calpico products. The drink uses lactic acid fermentation on non-fat cow milk to achieve its yogurt and cultured milk flavors, resulting in a slightly sour taste similar to Yakult and Kefir. Added sugar and strawberry concentrate give it its fruity taste.

Being a probiotic drink, Calpico Strawberry may help improve gut digestion and overall gut health. It also has a low calorie ratio of 8.3 calories per fl oz, but a high sugar concentration of 30g per serving, making it a sipping rather than chugging drink. Sometimes the sugar content makes me think twice about using this as a post-workout drink!

Ingredients & Nutritional Information:

Calpico Strawberry drink bottle with nutrition label in display, on a peach background
Calpico Strawberry nutrition label

Water, sugar, nonfat milk, lactic acid, maltitol syrup, cultured nonfat milk, natural and artificial flavors, strawberry juice concentrate, soy fiber, citric acid, pectin, sodium citrate, sucralose, red 40; Does not contain gluten. Contains 1% juice.

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size: 16.9 FL OZ (500 ml)Servings: 1 (1 bottle)
Calories: 140Fat Calories: 0
ValuePercentage (based on 2,000 calorie diet)
Total fat0 g0%
Trans fatNot a significant source
CholesterolNot a significant source
Sodium80 mg4%
Total Carbohydrates34 g12%
Fiber<1 g2%
Sugars29 g (incl. 27 g added sugars)54% (added sugars)
Protein1 g
Vitamin D – Not a significant sourceIron – Not a significant source
Calcium: 50 mg – 4%Potassium: 76 mg – 0%


Packaging rating: 4 / 5 

Calpico Strawberry drink plastic bottle next to a glass of Calpico Strawberry with snow peas in foreground and background, and on a peach background
Calpico Strawberry drink with glass

Calpico Strawberry’s bottle is square-shaped plastic with a modern and streamlined design that’s both sleek and vintage at the same time. If you look closely, you’ll see the Asahi brand name clearly marked on the bottle cap. 

The label is classically designed with a twist. The original Calpico brand featured blue dots over a white label, meant to symbolize the milky way. With Calpico Strawberry, they’ve switched things up by using pink dots and an illustration of two red strawberries to give the drink a playful and feminine vibe that’s sure to put a smile on your face.

If you’re purchasing Calpico Strawberry in the US, you’ll notice that the label is in English with minimal Japanese text. The important information, like the flavor and nutritional information, is fully translated and easy to understand. The only Japanese on the label translates to Strawberry and Calpico (in Katakana).

Calpico drink bottles are generally all uniform in structure, around 8.2 inches tall and 2.25 inches wide/deep. Many of them have a characteristic white cloudy color and are indistinguishable from a distance, but not Calpico Strawberry! It’s pastel pink shade catches the eye and makes it easy to spot on Asian grocery store shelves.  Calpico Strawberry is a delicious and refreshing drink that’s as pleasing to the eye as it is to the palate.

If you’re a fan of Calpico drinks, you’ll be happy to know that you can find their delicious drinks in most large metropolitan areas and even on Amazon. They’ve become so popular in recent years that you can even find them outside of Asian Grocery stores – sometimes boutique and speciality delis and grocers carry these drinks. You’re in luck if you want to find Calpico Strawberry as it is one of the most popular flavors – if you find Calpico drinks you’ll likely find Calpico Strawberry as well.

Product Summary

Overall this is a good drink choice if you like sweet and yogurt flavored cultured drinks.  Personally, it’s a bit sweet for me and the peach flavor tastes very synthetic half way through the drink. I find myself enjoying this drink over a long afternoon and over multiple sittings to balance out the sugar level. Calpico Strawberry is easy to find though so a good choice for those interested in trying out one of their first milky drinks.

Milky Drinks Rating3.5 / 5
Packaging Rating4 / 5
Milk TypeCow milk, soymilk
LactoseContains lactose
Sugar %*Brix meter: 7.0% sucrose (23.0℃)This surprised me! Must have a high fructose content since the drink is very sweet
Dietary RestrictionsVegetarian (product contains cow milk), gluten-free
Purchase DifficultyCommon

*Sugar content is measured by a brix meter (amazon link to popular one). Brix meters are refractometers that use light to measure the level of sucrose in a particular solution. You can learn more about them here.

Similar Products

There are many sister products of Calpico Strawberry. Calpico makes many flavors!

There are also other formats of Calpico sold in stores:

  • Calpico Soda
  • Calpico Original (in a can)
  • Calpico Concentrate Original
  • Calpico Concentrate Strawberry
  • Calpico Concentrate Pineapple
  • Calpico Mini

About the manufacturer

Let me tell you a little bit about Calpico and the drinks under the brand. You may have heard of them by their Japanese brand name, Calpis, which is typically sold as Calpis concentrate in Japan. But did you know that Calpico is actually the pre-packaged, ready-to-drink version of Calpis? Calpico is the grab and go choice for those who want a refreshing, non-carbonated beverage on the go.

Calpico has got it all in terms of flavors! From the classic Calpico Original to the tropical Calpico Mango and the fruity Calpico Melon, Calpico White Peach, there’s a flavor for everyone. Plus, Calpico makes these drinks in a variety of formats – carbonated Calpico soda, non-carbonated drinks, in cans, in plastic bottles, and also in mini-packs like Yakult.

Calpico was originally founded by Kaium Mishima after he traveled to Mongolia in the early 20th century after he traveled to Mongolia and met nomads on the steppes. He was introduced to Kumis, which is a traditional nomadic drink with many supposed health benefits made from fermented horse milk. He launched the first Calpis products in 1919 and the rest is history!

Calpico is currently owned by the Asahi Group, a Japanese business group that’s known for making some of the most popular drinks out there, like Asahi beer. They acquired the Calpis brand in 2012 for a whopping $1.5 billion USD! With a global presence across multiple continents, you can bet that the Asahi Group knows how to make a great beverage that appeals to a wide audience.

If you want to learn more about the Asahi Group and their amazing products, check out their website:

Where to buy

I typically buy from the following locations:

By Emily @

Hi! I started in 2023 because I’m lactose intolerant but love milk-based products. I regularly buy alternative and regular milk-based products throughout my travels. Excited to share.

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