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This week’s WFMW, hosted by the mighty Rocks in my Dryer, is all about brand loyalty.

I am a loyal Coca-Cola drinker. I love the snappy-fresh bite, the bubbles with attitude, the crisp finish. The caffeine.

Lately, however, my husband and I have been more aware of foods and drinks which contain high fructose corn syrup. It is in everything from “healthy” breads to salad dressings to yogurt. I have been hard-pressed finding products that do not contain HFCS. When I find one, I buy (product developers and marketers, are you paying attention?).

Two springs ago, we heard a rumor that the Coca-Cola company produces a version made with cane sugar for Passover. The corn in HFCS is not kosher, so the bottlers use the more thanks-to-tariffs expensive cane sugar in its place. The kosher Coke is supposedly distributed in markets with large Jewish populations—something Denver does not have. And it is only for a limited time.

My husband kept researching cane sugar Coke. We were happy to learn that Coke bottled in Mexico still uses cane sugar. His new mission in life became visiting carnecerias and other stores that were known for importing goods from Mexico, looking for the ever-elusive Mexican-bottled Coke.

Then one day, a few months ago, my husband was at Costco doing our weekly re-stock when he noticed a display of Coke. They were in large bottles—a telltale sign they weren’t bottled domestically, since U.S. bottlers are in love with plastics and cans. He inspected them and was happy to see the words Hecho En Mexico. He snapped up two 24-bottle cases and brought them home. I was pregnant at the time, so I had a mere sip.

I am not contending that Coke wth cane sugar is nutritionally superior to HFCS Coke. I am not implying it is a health food. But it has a less-chemical taste. It is closer to the original recipe. For a treat, nothing is better than grabbing an ice cold bottle from the fridge, cracking it open with a very confused and bleary-eyed bottle opener who forgot it existed for reasons other than cluttering my utensil drawer, and chugging.


24 comments to Refresco

  • I love the Mexican Coke in the bottles!
    Luckily, it is always plentiful at my grocery store. I had bought it once for a backyard bbq, thinking they would look fun in a tub full of ice and someone there told me about the sugar-cane vs. the HFCS. I had no idea, I just thought they were good! Now, it’s the only kind of Coke I buy. I never thought someone else would be out there buying them too!

  • I always wondered why coke tasted so much better on mission trips than it did here in the States. I didn’t know if it was the respite from the hard work, the glass bottles, or something else; but now I know!

  • SB

    Technically, it’s not that the corn is not ever kosher, it’s just not kosher on passover because it counts as “chametz.” It’s kosher every other week of the year.

    In an interesting parallel, Diet Coke in Europe also tastes a lot better because they use a different artificial sweetener. I won’t drink it in the US, but I love it in Europe.

  • Kat

    Well, I’ve learned something this morning. I’m very interested in finding these. Do you know if they make Diet Coke products too? Thanks for the info!


  • You rock- I love all of your stories!!! Now I really want a coke… I do love a good cherry coke!

  • That was the best thing when we lived in Boca Raton, no serching for the kosher coke. Now that I’m back in Texas I can get “dublin dr. pepper” that dr pepper bottled in Dublin, Texas…made with Imperial Sugar!!!

  • Wow – I never knew you could get coke with HFCS. That stuff will rot your blood vessels. Literally. I usually drink diet, but if I ever need to buy regular, I’m going to look for the Mexican stuff.

  • First of all, I would just like to say that if I actually got the Great Mopsy to do a WFMW, then I can die a happy woman now. 😉

    Second of all, down in south Texas you can buy the cane sugar Dr. Pepper, which my husbad swears is the nectar of the gods.

    And last, you “only took a sip” because you were pregnant? What is this language you’re speaking?

  • Yours is the first WFMW that I clicked into. We LOVE Mexican Coke! My husband was over the moon to discover Costco was carrying it. I wish all “food” producers would realize the buying public wants REAL ingredients!


  • I’ve been trying to eliminate HFCS from my family’s diet, but my personal stronghold has been Coke. Would it be crazy to get a Costco membership just for Coke refresco-style? 🙂

  • Shayne

    Agreeing with Andie that the Dublin Dr. Pepper is darn near the best drink ever made! I also try to avoid HFCS whenever possible, but that dang stuff is prolific!

  • Lari

    Coke in a glass bottle is the best! I grew up in South America and the coke there is much better that the US version. I’ll have to look on for the Mexican kind… Thanks for the tip!

  • Our Walmart just started selling Mexican Coke! YEAH FOR SEATTLE! isn’t it fantastic!

  • Tracy - tjly7

    OMG! Is that why I love Coke in those glass bottles so much???? I never knew that. There is DEFINITELY a difference.

  • diana

    Can’t stand Coke, but I am with you missing the bottled pop of my favorite flavors. there is no substitute for a glass bottle chilled icy cold. just another one of the things we have lost to “progress.”

  • I am a Coke junkie, and I always bummed about the HFCS…I have now found my mission, to find Mexican Coke! Thanks for the info!

  • Oh I love the brown fizzy stuff. What do you think about the kind with vitamins added?? It’s almost a health drink now!

  • I guess I missed the update somewhere along the way. So is high fructose corn syrup on the bad list now? Someone clue me in…oh wait, I have the internet. I must go search so I can know what the rest of you all know!

  • edj

    I, too, am appalled at how everything has HFCS now! I am not a big Coke drinker, but I’ve noticed the difference between Mauritanian Coke and American Coke. The big diff for me was in Diet Coke. I had one for the first time in years, and it was NASTY! I drink Coca Light, bottled in Morocco, occasionally, and it’s MUCH better.

  • wow, you really do love your coke! 🙂 I have to confess, my mt. dew addiction is right up there.

  • Yes, I’m older now. And I lived my youth in the (vilified, forgotten) ’60s. But I didn’t awaken until 1995, so that’s not the reason I’m saying this: I wish you’d all reconsider soda and bottled water.

    If you want to help third-world peoples, drink water from the tap. If you don’t like water from the tap, then you should demand of your local government clean water. The people whose water is being stolen and sold to you get no benefit. Ask the people of Pudussery, India. Go search on “India water bottlers OR soda.”

    As for soda, Coke and Pepsi have also engaged in the same kind of immoral, lawless practices that we find in other industries. The fact that our food supply is called the Agriculture Industry is not good for us because it turns one of our most precious life sources into commerce, as is now happening with or water supply.

    The reason HFCS is used so widely used is not that it’s cheap or homemade; it’s because powerful Americas got vindictive at Fidel Castro when he tossed the money changers out of the temple. That is, he stopped prostitution, gambling, and lawless in Cuba by throwing out the criminals abusing and perpetuating the poverty of the Cuban people. Our largest source of cane sugar, Cuba, has been punished for decades because the Castro brothers and the Cuban people wanted their country back.

    HFCS? Have you read the ingredient labels for the rest of what you put in your body?

    With best wishes and best hopes. Peace …

  • Man, we were just in Mexico – I would’ve liked to try it. That’s really interesting. I know the formulas are slightly different all over the world, based on different cultures having different tastes.

  • Cant wait till my husband gets home to show him this one. He is addicted to the stuff!

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