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A Websnark diet soda moment.

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For those of you in the UK who can't get Diet Black Cherry Vanilla Coke or Diet Cherry Vanilla Dr Pepper: it turns out that the obvious kludge is not, in fact, an utter disaster of chemical flavouring mismatches. Diet Coke with Cherry combines suitably well with Diet Coke Vanilla.

You want roughly equal portions, but err on the side of vanilla if you want more Dr Pepper and less Diet BCV Coke. To be honest, I wasn't expecting this to work. I was figuring on something more metallic that didn't quite mesh, or for the whole thing to come out too sweet -- or not sweet enough. (Nor, for that matter, was I expecting the result to taste significantly better than Dr Pepper Z, which is what passes for Diet Dr Pepper in Britain. And yet, and yet.)

And before anyone asks, no, adding vanilla extract or vanillin flavouring to Diet Coke with Cherry is just a really dumb idea. This will result in your soda tasting like someone dumped cough syrup into it, no matter how little you used. Remember, just because it works for coffee doesn't mean it works for anything else at all.

This is not a means of reliably replicating either soda. If nothing else, you'll probably never get the balance exactly right. If what you absolutely need is honest-to-god DBCVC or DCVDP, then you need to be frequenting Covent Garden's import shops. However, the combo does scratch the appropriate itches, and it's way cheaper than going the import soda route so long as Diet Coke Vanilla is still on shelves. Reserve your Covent Garden trip for tracking down Raspberry Coke, which apparently only ever surfaced in New Zealand. (Or Coke Blak. If you're suicidal.)

I also can't guarantee that this works with the US formulations. Or that you could improve Pepsi Max Cino by adding, well, anything to it at all.

(Also, I want to know whose idea it was to market Diet Cherry Coke with that label. Yes, I understand the name scheme. Diet Coke with Lemon begat Diet Coke with Lime. The fruits are not like unto the extracts. But what crude word do they have for the hymen? I'm guessing that Warrant's UK release of "Cherry Pie" was taken literally back in the day.)

Upcoming: debugging a couple of Achewood cookbook recipes for flaky gas cookers.

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