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Coke is a classic soft drink. It’s been around for ages and it pairs nicely with a burger and fries. You can’t get a more iconic summer bbq grouping than a burger and coke.

But have you ever noticed that Coke tastes slightly different depending on if it comes from a can versus a bottle? If you’re like me, you might have been scoffed at by others because Coke is all made the same, right? So why would it taste different?

Coca Cola
Photo: Unsplash/Mahbod Akhzami

Well, we’re here to tell you that you’re not imagining it. There actually is a slight difference in tastes despite it all being the same recipe. And here is why.

The manufacturers of the soda claim they use the same soda recipe regardless of whether or not the soda late gets packed into a can or bottle. However, there are a few differences that arise from reactions within these packaging items.

For example, the aluminum cans used for Coke have polymer lining. According to a report by Popular Science, food chemist Sarah Risch explained that this lining can absorb some of the Coke’s flavors, making it taste possibly milder.

Coke Bottle
Photo: Unsplash/Artem Beliaikin

Risch further elaborates that the Coke that comes out of a plastic bottle can also have its flavoring altered due to the acetaldehyde in the plastic potentially getting into the soda.

That is why you can even tell the difference between plastic or glass bottles. Glass bottles are essentially inert, meaning the Coke you’re tasting is as close to the original recipe as you can get, explains Business Insider. One chemist even suggested that the metal taste people are getting from Coke cans isn’t so much the presence of metal in the soda, but rather your own sensitivity to metal as you press the can to your lips. Fascinating!

Drinking Soda
Photo: PXHERE

One researcher studying taste from Harvey Mudd College explained to Business Insider that there are various factors that can make someone pick up a certain flavor, and it is all based on a person’s own sensitive taste buds.

Can you tell the difference between Coke from a can or a bottle? Can you tell the difference between Coke that came out of a glass bottle versus a plastic bottle? Let us know!

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