Bacchus (Korean: 박카스) is a non-carbonated South Korean energy drink, first launched in 1963. It has been called Bacchus-D before a change in formula in the 1990s, after which it was known as Bacchus-F to note the increased amount of Taurine in the product (2000mg). Both formulas are manufactured by Dong-A Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd., part of the Dong-A Socio Group; and is also distributed in the United States under the Dong-A America Corporation in a 3.3 oz glass bottle (approximately 1/3 the size of a Red Bull).
Bacchus has been popular in South Korea for many years. Originally it was sold in pharmacies as an 'herbal medicine' to prevent colds and cure hangovers, rather than as an energy drink. The Bacchus D and F formula's are both manufactured and sold in South Korea at this time; neither line has been discontinued. The use of Bacchus-F among college aged adolescents is highly prevalent.
It has recently risen to prominence in American culture alongside other popular energy drinks consumed in combination with alcohol, such as Vodka-Red Bull. The most common form of consumption is the "Bacchus Bomb", which is produced by pouring a full 3.3 oz bottle of Bacchus into a cup and subsequently dropping a shot glass filled with vodka into the cup, with the resulting mixture being consumed as rapidly as possible.
The drink is similar to the preexisting Japanese drink Lipovitan not only in ingredients but also in bottle and packaging design. There is a strong suspicion that Dong-A Pharmaceutical plagiarized Japanese Lipovitan.
In popular culture
- The Bacchus Lady is a South Korean film that was presented in the Panorama section of the 66th Berlin International Film Festival. The film depicts the life of an elderly Bacchus Lady who is a Korean prostitute selling the Bacchus-F energy drink.
Bacchus contains the following ingredients:
- High fructose corn syrup
- Guarana extract
- Royal jelly
- Pyridoxine HCl
- Riboflavin sodium phosphate
- Nitrate preserved with sodium benzoate
- Citric acid anhydrous
- Apple juice
- Sodium chloride
- Natural essences (orange pineapple strawberry)
- Artificial flavor
- (in Korean) Dong-A Pharmaceutical Co. Archived 2011-06-10 at the Wayback Machine. at Encyclopedia of Korean Culture
- (in Korean) The nation's drink at the pharmacy, Asia Economics, 2010-04-23. Retrieved 2010-06-27.
- (in Korean) Bacchus bomb drink at Doosan Encyclopedia
- (in Korean) New bomb drinks, No Cut News, 2009-06-18. Retrieved 2010-06-27.
- (in Korean)"박카스에 드리운 '日 그림자', 표절 논란도…" [Bacchus, 'Shadow of Japan', plagiarism controversy ...]. 프라임경제 [Prime Economy]. 25 January 2011.
- KGROCER.com - Ingredients