During our travels in the Pacific Northwest, my wife and I found a bottle of Coke Zero at a gas station when we were putting gas in the rental car. This drink was announced back in March and it seems to be targeted at a male audience.
Unlike Diet Coke, which is sweetened with aspartame, Coke Zero is powered by both aspartame and acesulfame potassium (also known as Ace-K). This is in contrast to Coke’s other “not officially diet but it really is” drink, Coke C2, which is sweetened by a mix of aspartame, sucralose, and Ace-K.
The packaging is very cool, in my opinion. I like the use of black and white colors, with just a highlight of dark red. The font style used for the word “Zero” is also innovative if you take a close look. The “Z” is very bold, but by the time you get to the “O” the weight of the letter is thin. Nice illusion there.
It should be noted that the formula for Coke Zero is a diet version of the Coke Classic formula, whereas the formula for Diet Coke is actually a diet version of New Coke/Coke II, thus there is a big difference in taste.
The drink smells like Coke, which is a good sign. Upon first taste, it was obvious this was a diet drink. It just has that “funny” taste that you associate with artificial sweeteners. That said, it’s probably one of the best diet drinks I’ve tasted from Coke. Not too bad, though I’m still not a fan. Those who lean more towards diet colas will probably like Coke Zero quite a bit.