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U.S. Addicted to Mexican Coke


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Apparently, Mexicans who come to the U.S. have brought a special treat with them to make el norte feel a bit more like home: Mexican Coca-Cola, complete with the old-timey, voluptuous glass bottle (I understand the exact term is "hobbleskirt"). There's enough demand that Costco is stocking the stuff. "Mexican Coke is selling like crazy bro, and I can't keep up," says a shopkeep speaking the native tongue of Northern California (aka Nor Cal).

So why do they like the stuff so much? Coke itself says the drink is the same; "Coke is Coke is Coke." Mexicans, they say, must just be happy with the very va-voom-y bottle. To be sure, the glass Coke bottle has objectively better aesthetics, and there's not too many times you can say that.

But oh, there's more to it than that. First off, Mexican Coke is made with cane sugar, rather than the high-fructose corn syrup that's oozed its way from the heavily subsidized corn fields of the Midwest to practically every corner of every supermarket, as Michael Pollan has ably described. I don't know of any data proving that corn syrup tastes worse to most people, but it might well taste different, and sometimes tasting different is tasting worse.

Also, glass is a better thermal insulator, and because cool liquids can dissolve more gas, the glass bottle keeps your Coke fizzier longer.


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