Red Letter Day For Pepsi….

“The Real Thing”

 Has the Coca Cola soft-drink recipe mystery finally been solved?  On the public radio show “This American Life” this past weekend it was announced that it had uncovered the Coca Cola’s top-secret ingredient, the secret “Merchandise 7X.”  Merchandise 7X may not sound terribly appealing, but many think it’s the secret ingredient.  What is it?  In 1979 The Atlanta Journal-Constitution published an article on the history of Coca-Cola and appearently included a photograph.  The photo allegedly showed a handwritten copy of the Coca-Cola recipe invented by John Pemberton which included the exact contents of Merchandise 7X.  The recipe was apparently written down in a Pemberton friend’s journal.  Close examination of the photo revealed enough to disect the recipe.  The show was terribly entertaining even stating that at any one time only two Coca Cola employees are known to know the recipe, that is until now.

According to the program it is:
Fluid extract of Coca: 3 drams USP
Citric acid: 3 oz.
Caffeine: 1 oz.
Sugar: 30 (unclear quantity)
Water: 2.5 gallons
Lime juice: 2 pints, 1 quart
Vanilla: 1 oz.
Caramel: 1.5 oz. or more for color

The secret 7X flavor (use 2 oz. of flavor to 5 gallons syrup):
Alcohol: 8 oz.
Orange oil: 20 drops
Lemon oil: 30 drops
Nutmeg oil: 10 drops
Coriander: 5 drops
Neroli: 10 drops
Cinnamon: 10 drops

This American Life put together the recipe.  The first batch had a “medicinal” taste.  The second go around with weakened ingredients, got closer, even fooling one expert in a blind taste test.  But a Coca-Cola company historian says he “doesn’t think it’s the right formulation”.  I can’t give it a try as I don’t think I could even find the ingredients.  Besides I like Diet Coke so I wouldn’t know what ingredient to leave out!

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