It's also interesting to see a picture of a glass bottle coke when the American product rarely exists in such form. I've sworn off the HFCS version after discovering the Mexican recipe with cane sugar - it tastes so much better and comes in a glass bottle. When I was in Tijuana for a Startup Weekend, that's all they served.
I investigated kola nut as part of the process, and kola nut is simply not what I have been assuming all these years. The powdered form of the kola nut has an awful, bitter taste that is nothing like the "cola" taste. Rather, the main source of Coca-Cola's "bite" comes from the acid component. Some of it may perhaps also come from the caffeine and/or processed cocoa leaves.
Also, I have not seen any recipe (including the purported original recipe by Pemberton) that uses kola nut.
It's much cheaper than Mexican Coke (same price as regular 2 liter Coke), although it doesn't come in a glass bottle. And it's delicious! I actually stock up every year since I found out about this.
Incidentally, there are some very good "alternative" colas. My favourite is Fentimans' Curiosity Cola , which NY Times once described as "the world's best cola", and which is made with a small amount of fermented ginger (fermented juices is their thing). I also really like Boylan's Cane Cola .
I've read it's available some places now; I haven't seen it myself yet this year.
"Which foods and beverages contain GFS?
Because of the limited availability in Europe, the products in which GFS is used, are those where the sweetening power and other qualities are needed simultaneously. Examples of this can be found in baked goods, cereal products, confectionery, jams and preserves, yogurts and other dairy products, condiments (e.g. mustard and ketchup), canned and packed goods. The use of GFS in soft drinks has been limited as this application needs a fructose content of 42% or higher to give the desired sweetness and GFS is not available in sufficient quantities to be widely used in soft drinks. In the EU, soft drinks continue to be sweetened mostly with sucrose, when in the US, they are sweetened with HFCS."
(Linked from here:
Explains that the Mexican coke tested had fructose and glucose in it. It could have been bottled with HFCS or perhaps the cane sugar split in the bottle.
That doesn't in any way account for all the possible differences with Mexican coke though.