Featured in Vallarta Lifestyles Magazine, Fall/Winter 2007 issue.

Harkening back to an era when no respectable soft drink would be sold in a can or plastic bottle, Lee and Nancy Chapman’s “Vintage Refresco Collection” of 198 unopened Mexican soda bottles makes a nostalgic statement in their Puerto Vallarta home.

Smitten when coming across them in a Guadalajara bazaar, yet perplexed about what to do with them, they remembered a wooden cabinet with a vintage “Refrescos Jarritos” sign on it bought years before in San Miguel de Allende, which turned out to be an apropos foundation for the glass and wood display cabinet they had made. United, the bottles were transformed into a whimsical work of art. And a definite conversation starter! Soft drinks have an almost cult status in this country, where per capita consumption is among the world’s highest. And it’s interesting to note that the former leader of the republic, Vicente Fox, was a Coca-Cola executive prior to assuming the country’s highest office.

In the warm colors and exotic flavors Mexico is renowned for, like tamarind, mango and guava, some bottles proudly proclaim they contain “real juice or pulp.” Noteworthy are The Chocolate Soldier – a short bottle with a soldier logo that says “Shake me.” And when you do, the chocolate at the bottom mixes with the carbonation; PEP – orange soda in a very deco-looking bottle with a red and black logo; and (former president of Mexico) Ernesto Zedillo Cola – what can we say? Must have been a limited edition release of his presidential victory!