As mentioned in comments below, I obtained a 2-liter bottle of Coke Zero at Brookshire’s today. My first impression of the beverage is that it’s very good—you’re not likely to confuse it with Coca-Cola Classic, unless you just haven’t had a Coke in a long time, but it’s not in any way similar to Diet Coke and I really couldn’t discern any aftertaste. I also think it’s better than C2. I think Coke has a winner here.
It also makes a very good mixer with Bacardi Gold—too good perhaps.
Apparently, someone at Coca-Cola had the brainwave of making a beverage that tastes exactly like a combination of three ingredients:
- Carbonated water
- Caramel food coloring
This beverage has absolutely no discernable flavor other than that of sugar water. Now, if you like sugar water, Diet Coke with Splenda is the beverage for you. Me, I’m just hoping Coca-Cola Zero actually manages to taste non-awful, although I have to say that the relaunched Pepsi One isn’t a complete travesty, though, regrettably, on the wrong side of the Coke-Pepsi divide for my palate.
James Joyner links to an AP article about Coca-Cola’s plans to launch a new product in June, called “Coca-Cola Zero.” He asks:
It’s unclear why Coke Zero will be different from Diet Coke or Coke C2.
Well, the obvious answer is that C2 is not a zero-calorie soda; it’s just half the calories of regular Coke. Diet Coke doesn’t taste anything like Coke. So, the moral of the story is that a “diet Coke” that tastes like real Coke would be worth having; according to Coke’s press release, that’s the plan:
“Coca-Cola Zero is exactly what young adults told us they wanted – real Coca-Cola taste, zero calories and a new brand they can call their own,” said Dan Dillon, vice president, Diet Portfolio, Coca-Cola North America. “Young people today do not want to compromise on flavor or calories and we think Coca-Cola Zero’s taste and personality will appeal to them.”
There’s a product website here, of course.