Coca-Cola Energy Is Terrible

Coca-Cola Energy Is Terrible

Coca-Cola is a classic soda that has been around for over 120 years. But times change and folks in 2020 no longer want a little caffeine. They want a lot of it. As a result energy drinks are super popular right now and so Coca-Cola, wanting to capture some of this new market, has released a new drink, Coke Energy, in the US. After tasting the new drink all I can say is it’s not great!

Actually, I have more to say on the subject of Coke Energy. If I didn’t, this would be a much shorter post.

The basic idea of Coke Energy is to take the already popular Coca-Cola and add in some standard energy drink ingredients (caffeine, guarana, etc) to make it more POWERFUL. Or to at least get people more wired after drinking a few. There isn’t a lot of originality happening here. The cans look like Red Bull cans, complete with coloured tab and plain silver top. Also, the outside design of the cans feels really rushed and like something you would see on the shelves of a store in a Ubisoft open-world game. It’s just a big can that says energy on the side with some swirls.

The cans give off a very “Your dad decided to make an energy drink too” vibe. But cans aren’t why we buy energy drinks. We buy them to get a boost of short term energy that will go away faster and faster as we drink more, slowly forcing us to drink even more and in the process we end up losing all sensitivity to caffeine. And if that’s what you are wanting, you could do a lot better than Coke Energy.

I grew up drinking a lot of Coca-Cola. I love the flavour of Coke. I don’t drink it anymore outside of rare occasions, but when I do I savour it. This stuff isn’t quite Coke. But it ain’t quite what I expect from an energy drink like Monster or Red Bull. I’ll break down the three flavours below. (I was unable to find a can of Cherry Zero. Sorry.)


Coke Energy

This is the standard version of the drink. In theory, this should just taste like Coke but with more energy. In practice, it doesn’t work. I feel like the Coke formula is a tricky thing and messing with it can lead to things go poorly. Remember New Coke? At first, when you sip the can, you get a nice strong taste of Coke. But quickly it goes away and a medical taste appears before that leaves your mouth and then all you are left with is a bad aftertaste. It lingers and makes drinking Coke Energy feel like a bad experience.


Coke Energy Zero Sugar

I was expecting this to taste like the first can of standard Coke Energy, but with a sweeter or less sweet finish. Instead, I got something very different. The initial taste that fills your mouth is sickly sweet Coke followed quickly by a similar aftertaste as Coke Energy. But this one is even worse. More metallic and it lasts longer. I hated it.


Coke Energy Cherry

I’ve never been the biggest fan of Coke Cherry. Honestly, most flavored Cokes don’t do it for me. So I was expecting to hate Coke Energy Cherry. And yet…I didn’t. In fact, of the three I tried, it was the one I could see myself drinking again. (If I didn’t have access to anything else but Coke Energy drinks. Which sounds like a nightmare.) Cherry didn’t have as bad of an aftertaste and the overall fruitier flavour helped make the energy drink bits all work together better. Or at least hide them from my tongue.

I don’t recommend buying these unless you are curious about how they taste or you just love strange aftertastes and bad energy drinks.

At the store where I bought these, all the Coke Energy cans sat untouched. Nearby Red Bulls and Game Fuels seemed almost picked clean. I think this drink might not be around for long. So if you are curious, you might want to grab one sooner than later.


    • Same here, I found it on sale already at 50% off in my local supermarket so bought one can to try it, utter cr.p, would never drink it again, I couldn’t put my finger on what was wrong but yeah, metallic taste describes it well.

      • Coke in a can always tastes metallic though. Coke in a plastic bottle is better, but for the best Coke experience, (for varying levels of “best”) you can’t beat a glass bottle.

  • I actually found these to be the least offensive tasting of the energy drinks, I have never liked any of the standard energy drinks because they tasted disgusting. By I tried these on a few occasions where I didn’t sleep as much as I should have before having to go to work, and while there is the after taste like the article mentions, the almost coke flavour is miles ahead of the other garbage available. I suspect that adding guarana to coke is what gives that medical taste you mention, because I get that from all energy drinks, at least the coke taste initially is nice.

    I don’t drink energy drinks often, I’m not dependent on caffeine like 99% of humanity (don’t drink coffee, drink minimal soft drink) but I would probably choose this in a pinch for that quick pick me up when I absolutely need one

    • I wish I wasn’t dependant on V Drinks. Makes it even harder to stop because in my head V Drink and video games go hand in hand.

    • Same. I don’t really like any energy drinks but they have their purpose. Coke Energy just tastes like coke flavoured red bull. It’s not nice, but it was never going to be with those ingredients.
      I don’t think the cherry one has come out here?

  • Just a reminder that energy drinks are bad and you shouldn’t drink them if you want your kidneys to grow old with you.

  • I also tried it when it first came out here. Hoo-eee that was some foul mixture.
    I’ll stick with the original, thanks. And Monster for my energy drink requirement.

    • Monster Drink always tastes like it has twice the sugar of other ones.
      Mother Drink always tastes a bit like beer to me – weird I know. I don’t like beer.

  • The horrible taste keeps you awake for longer, I love it

    I’ll even mix it with a spoon of balsamic vinegar and s.pellegrino to add even more awakeness

  • These have been around in Australia for months, and within 2 weeks the price was dropped to less than half, people still aren’t buying them.

  • Gimmie V, or gimmie shorter work shifts and a long nap. Please? Oh and umm, Death! That’s it! *coughs* Ahem… OR GIMMIE DEATH!*

    *By death, i actually mean Monster. Good Lord, it tastes like how the after-scent of toilet cleaner smells.

  • This seems like an odd move to release this in the US after how poorly they tasted/sold here in Australia. Seems doubly like a poor idea when Coke already own the Mother brand in Australia which is a decently successful energy drink, wouldn’t it make more sense to take your good energy drink to a new market but rebrand it to your stronger brand?

    • I think Americans are more used to awfulness. We gotta remember that American Coke doesn’t taste as good as Australian Coke, because it’s made with corn syrup instead of cane sugar.

      I tried an imported bottle once, not realizing it was imported, and my first reaction was that it had expired, gone past its use-by date.

      If Americans like fucking garbage Coke, maybe they’ll like garbage energy drink Coke.

  • I agree. I tried a can a few months ago, when it first hit Coles.

    It’s awful. It tastes pretty much like if you just dumped a couple teaspoons of instant coffee into a regular can of coke.

    No-one outside of engineering/IT uni students should be doing that.

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