The Result of Boredom and Curiosity: Diet Coke + Coke Zero

DISCLAIMER: This is just a random experiment/observation, which would be resulted of me regretting it. Maybe.

It happened when I saw these two siblings in a mini mart.

The Twins

Yes, they are Diet Coke and Coca-cola Zero.

As I was looking at them, I was wondering what the differences of these two. I’ve read some articles or blog posts about the differences. I also have heard some people mentioned the differences of these two. But for some reasons, I’m still curious.

So, I ended up buying these two, and now I am trying them out. Hopefully I won’t regret drinking two cans of soda at night, when I will have work tomorrow morning.

Anyway, taste wise…I don’t find any differences. Both of them taste the same. Even if they have, it would too soft for my tongue to taste.

But then, as I looked at the ingredients, I was kinda surprised. These two have the exact ingredients, only for one thing. Diet Coke has citric acid as one of its acidity regulator, while Coke Zero has trisodium citrate for one of its acidity regulator. As for the rest, they are completely the same.

FYI, everything is written in Indonesian, but it's still obvious that both of them have the same ingredients.

FYI, everything is written in Indonesian, but it’s still obvious that both of them have the same ingredients.

Eventhough the taste is the same, but there’s a slight of difference. But being said that, in some ways, Diet Coke has less fizziness comparing to Coke Zero. Diet Coke tastes a little bit flat comparing it to its brother.

Anyway, to feed my curiosity more, I decided to pour them to two glasses. Perhaps, they’d have differences in colour. But, I was wrong…

Left : Diet Coke; Right: Coke Zero

Left : Diet Coke; Right: Coke Zero

As you can see, they both have the same colour. If there is, my eyes didn’t catch it. But again, I did notice differences in fizziness between these two.

Then I decided to keep tasting the two. The more I taste, the more I felt as if I am drinking the same thing, from two different glasses.

Though I notice, the taste became not as addictive as when you tasted them from the cans directly. Perhaps…that’s the secret is from the can! *DUN DUN DUN*


I decided to let the drinks until almost all the fizziness gone. After around 10 minutes, apparently Diet Coke has all its fizziness gone, yet Coke Zero still has some lingered.

Left: Diet Coke; Right: Coke Zero

Left: Diet Coke; Right: Coke Zero. There are still some leftover fizziness in Coke Zero’s glass

Taste wise? Now, this is the interesting part. You can actually taste some differences in them. They are not distinguished ones, yet very subtle ones.

Diet Coke tastes less sweet comparing to Coke Zero. Also it has this lemony aftertaste. On the other hand, Coke Zero, being sweeter than Diet Coke, has salty-sour aftertaste while still holds it fizziness (even after around 40 minutes in the glass).

Interestingly, both drinks were still fizzy when I tried the ones that were still in the cans. I guess the can has some magic power… (this is the soda talking…don’t mind it…).

So, if these two are like twins, why Coca-cola would even bother to sell them in two different packaging?

Well, other people have answered this question actually. The answer would be market segmentation.

When Diet Coke was first introduced, it has been associated with girls, especially the ones who try to stay thin (while enjoying their ‘beloved’ beverage of course). But on the other hand, for guys, who think the word “diet” is associated for girls only stuff, they were introduced to Coke Zero. Introduced firstly in 2005, the soda was described as “calorie-free” rather than “diet”.

Though of course, in the end, they’re both the same.

Well, that’s it for my sorta experiment. Now, I have to finish these two sodas…while enduring my body’s protest.


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