The Comeback of Coke: The Flavors That Are Due for a Return

Coke has always been known for its wide range of soda flavors. Over the years, they have introduced and discontinued dozens of unique sodas, leaving behind a trail of flavors that are dearly missed. From New Coke to Tab Clear, these drinks have left a lasting impression on cola lovers. Let’s take a trip down memory lane and explore the Coke drinks that are due for a comeback.

Diet Cherry Vanilla Coke
Diet Cherry Vanilla Coke

New Coke: The Infamous Marketing Flop

When you think of Coke and failure, New Coke is likely the first thing that comes to mind. In 1985, Coca-Cola made a bold move to swap the classic recipe with the new and improved New Coke. The public’s reaction was swift and furious, with thousands of phone calls pouring into the company to express their outrage. After just three months, Coca-Cola was forced to bring back the original recipe due to public demand. Although New Coke was widely criticized, some people actually enjoyed its taste. There’s a perfectly delicious Coca-Cola out there that you’ve probably never tasted, all because some consumers feared change.

Coke II: A Forgotten Flavor

Coke II, also known as New Coke without the marketing frenzy, made its debut in 1992. It was an attempt to revitalize the brand after the failure of New Coke. Unfortunately, the public had no interest in trying new versions of their favorite soda, and Coke II slowly faded away. Coca-Cola never fully explained why they loved this particular recipe, but it may have been because it was cheaper to produce than the original Coca-Cola. Though Coke II is a thing of the past, the company seems to have learned from its mistakes and is now experimenting with new flavors.

Black Cherry Vanilla Coke: A Perfect Storm of Flavors

Black Cherry Vanilla Coke seemed like the perfect combination of dessert flavors. It was introduced in 2006 but sadly disappeared from the market after just a year. While Coca-Cola brought back regular Vanilla Coke in the same year, the unique blend of black cherry and vanilla didn’t make the cut. Fortunately, Coke seems to have realized the potential of this flavor combination and has recently released a new Cherry Vanilla Coke. With its slightly different twist, it’s a drink that is sure to delight those who miss Black Cherry Vanilla Coke.

Coca-Cola Blāk: The Coffee-Hungry Drink

In 2006, Coke introduced Coca-Cola Blāk—a carbonated beverage with a coffee twist. It was a drink designed for those with a sweet tooth and a love for cold, caffeinated beverages. However, after just 17 months, it was discontinued. Coca-Cola attributed the drink’s failure to bad timing, stating that people weren’t ready for a coffee-flavored Coke back then. But since then, the company has been slowly experimenting with similar products, like Coca-Cola Plus Coffee, as consumers’ coffee preferences have evolved. This could mean that a coffee-infused Coke might make a comeback in the future.

Coca-Cola C2: The Half-and-Half Soda

Coca-Cola C2 was launched in 2004 as a healthier alternative to regular Coke. It promised half the carbs and calories of the original while still delivering the same great taste. The goal was to appeal to health-conscious individuals who didn’t resonate with the “feminine” image of Diet Coke. However, C2’s sales mostly cut into those of Coke and Diet Coke, and it eventually faded away. Despite its initial failure, there might still be room for a soda that offers a compromise between indulgence and calorie-consciousness. C2 could be that comfortable middle ground for those looking to reduce their drink calorie intake without sacrificing flavor.

Diet Coke Plus: A Soda with Added Nutrients

Diet Coke Plus was introduced in 2007 as a soda fortified with vitamins and minerals. It was marketed as a healthier option, offering benefits beyond just quenching your thirst. However, the FDA took issue with the idea of fortifying carbonated beverages and deemed Diet Coke Plus insufficient in terms of added nutrients. Coca-Cola faced poor sales and eventually removed the product from store shelves. In today’s health-conscious era, it’s not hard to imagine Diet Coke Plus making a triumphant return with a revised formula that satisfies both taste buds and nutritional requirements.

Coca-Cola Raspberry: A Kiwi Favorite

Coca-Cola Raspberry made its debut in New Zealand in 2006 and quickly became a hit among locals. Due to its popularity, the drink made a comeback in 2017 as a summer treat for the Kiwi country. Coca-Cola recognized the affinity New Zealanders had for the raspberry flavor and has since experimented with variations of the drink, such as the California Raspberry-flavored spin. With the ongoing experimentation and the berry’s active role in Coke’s recipe game, a refreshing can of Raspberry Coke may not be completely out of the question in the future.

Tab Clear: A Drink Designed to Fail

Tab Clear was created as a strategic move by Coca-Cola to take down its competitor, Crystal Pepsi. Released in 1993, Tab Clear was marketed as a diet drink and confused consumers, causing Crystal Pepsi to lose its identity as well. Both drinks disappeared from the market shortly after their introduction. While Tab Clear may have been a failure by design, the drink itself is not to blame. With regular Tab discontinued, bringing back its clear cousin could be the perfect replacement.

OK Soda: A Quirky Experiment

OK Soda’s story is one of the strangest in soft drink history. Launched in 1993, OK Soda had a subversive product design and an anti-marketing campaign that left consumers guessing about its taste. Unfortunately, consumers were not ready for a drink marketed as drinkable postmodernism, and OK Soda was discontinued in 1995. However, the drink has gained a cult following, and a second chance may be just what it needs to thrive.

Diet Coke Lime: A Classic Combination

Diet Coke Lime seemed like a winning combination when it was introduced in 2018. However, it fell victim to the declining sales of diet sodas and was discontinued. But there’s hope on the horizon. Coca-Cola has experimented with a new Diet Coke flavor called “Sublime Lime” in the UK, and the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. With lime and Diet Coke fans eager for its return, it’s possible that the blessed union of lime and Diet Coke will grace grocery store shelves once more.

Sprite Remix: A Fruity Delight

Sprite Remix, a fruity variant of Sprite, debuted in 2002 with flavors like Tropical, Berryclear, and Aruba Jam. Unfortunately, the line failed to capture the hearts of the public, and it was discontinued in 2005. However, in 2016, Coca-Cola decided to bring back the Tropical variant due to fan demand. While Sprite Remix Tropical found its way back onto the shelves, fans of Aruba Jam and Berryclear are left hoping for a comeback as well.

Coca-Cola has a rich history of introducing unique flavors to the world. While some have been met with success, others have faced unfortunate outcomes. However, with the changing tastes and preferences of consumers, there’s always a chance for these beloved flavors to make a triumphant return. So keep an eye out for your favorite discontinued Coke drinks, because you never know when they might make a comeback.

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