Author Topic: Diet Dr Pepper  (Read 930 times)

bdb318

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Diet Dr Pepper
« on: April 13, 2017, 10:27:06 AM »
Do you remember the ad campaign from the 90s that claimed, "Diet Dr Pepper tastes more like regular Dr Pepper"?

I was always confused by this, because it wasn't clear what the basis for comparison was. Does Diet Dr Pepper taste more like regular Dr Pepper than it previously tasted like regular Dr Pepper? Or does Diet Dr Pepper taste more like regular Dr Pepper than... other beverages that are neither Diet Dr Pepper nor regular Dr Pepper? Or does Diet Dr Pepper taste more like regular Dr Pepper than, say, Diet Coke taste like regular Coke?

This always bothered me. Perhaps this was the point. I'm still thinking about it decades later, I guess.
« Last Edit: April 13, 2017, 10:35:57 AM by bdb318 »

akaJudge

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Re: Diet Dr Pepper
« Reply #1 on: April 13, 2017, 02:51:55 PM »
diet dr. pepper has been around for a long time, i remember my mom and aunts drinking it in the 70s. it used to taste quite foul and the current iteration is closer to actual DP by miles and miles.
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bdb318

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Re: Diet Dr Pepper
« Reply #2 on: April 13, 2017, 03:18:39 PM »
diet dr. pepper has been around for a long time, i remember my mom and aunts drinking it in the 70s. it used to taste quite foul and the current iteration is closer to actual DP by miles and miles.

Interesting to hear, as I don't think I had my first Diet Dr Pepper until the late 90s at the very earliest. Did the newer, better-tasting formulation coincide with the 90s ad campaign?

marsdentrainfan

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Re: Diet Dr Pepper
« Reply #3 on: April 14, 2017, 06:15:39 PM »
Not to hijack the topic, but does anybody wanna throw in on any other diet sodas? Not normally a diet drinker, but one I find to be pretty tasty is Fresca

buffcoat

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Re: Diet Dr Pepper
« Reply #4 on: April 14, 2017, 11:16:21 PM »
I've never been able to stomach the taste of any artificial sweetners, but the improvements in the taste of diet soda correlate directly with the introduction of aspartame/NutraSweet into the industry.

I remember pre-NutraSweet TAB. It didn't even resemble cola.

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bdb318

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Re: Diet Dr Pepper
« Reply #5 on: April 15, 2017, 09:08:47 AM »
I love Fresca. It's one of my favorites. Much superior to Squirt, in my opinion, which is naturally sweetened.

I actually kind of like TaB on occasion even though it's still made with saccharine and not the more palatable "modern" artificial sweeteners (like aspartame). It's quite true that it tastes "fake", but I think one can make the case that all fizzy soft drinks taste "fake". As long as one is drinking a weird, over-manufactured mega-corporate product, the in-your-face-ness of TaB can be a bracing if aggressive gut punch. Who doesn't love a bracing if aggressive gut punch every now and then?

I've always liked Diet Coke, which is supposed to be the same basic recipe as New Coke but with aspartame instead of sugar/HFCS. I believe Diet Coke and New Coke entered the market at roughly the same time, in fact. I have no recollection of ever having tasted full-sugar New Coke, though.

I really do not like Diet Pepsi, though, in spite of liking regular Pepsi OK. I guess it's weird that I'd rather drink TaB than Diet Pepsi, since the taste of TaB is so much more polarizing and so much more obviously "fake", but I think this speaks to how well-balanced TaB is, compared to Diet Pepsi. Now, just because something is well-balanced doesn't mean you have to like the way it tastes, but Diet Pepsi has a weird one-dimensionality that makes it totally not worthwhile for me.   


marsdentrainfan

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Re: Diet Dr Pepper
« Reply #6 on: April 15, 2017, 06:36:21 PM »
I love Fresca. It's one of my favorites. Much superior to Squirt, in my opinion, which is naturally sweetened.

I actually kind of like TaB on occasion even though it's still made with saccharine and not the more palatable "modern" artificial sweeteners (like aspartame). It's quite true that it tastes "fake", but I think one can make the case that all fizzy soft drinks taste "fake". As long as one is drinking a weird, over-manufactured mega-corporate product, the in-your-face-ness of TaB can be a bracing if aggressive gut punch. Who doesn't love a bracing if aggressive gut punch every now and then?

I've always liked Diet Coke, which is supposed to be the same basic recipe as New Coke but with aspartame instead of sugar/HFCS. I believe Diet Coke and New Coke entered the market at roughly the same time, in fact. I have no recollection of ever having tasted full-sugar New Coke, though.

I really do not like Diet Pepsi, though, in spite of liking regular Pepsi OK. I guess it's weird that I'd rather drink TaB than Diet Pepsi, since the taste of TaB is so much more polarizing and so much more obviously "fake", but I think this speaks to how well-balanced TaB is, compared to Diet Pepsi. Now, just because something is well-balanced doesn't mean you have to like the way it tastes, but Diet Pepsi has a weird one-dimensionality that makes it totally not worthwhile for me.

Do I get the feeling you're a fellow soft-drink enthusiast? Haha. Really I did appreciate the in depth reply.

Fresca is probably the only diet beverage I really consume on a regular basis. I have tried Squirt but—as you say—it just doesn't quite match the flavour of Fresca. I'd be willing to give it another shot though. Perhaps unfamiliarity coloured my opinion too much.

Interesting you bring up TaB. Its not available in Canada, so I've never tried it—but I've wanted to for years. I gather it has something of a cult following, and I'd love to know what the fuss is about—that and the idea of a soda which tastes somewhat like nutmeg just has me flat out fairly curious.  At one point, in fact, a friend of mine in high school and I were trying to order a flat of TaB from the US so we could try it—before we realized shipping would be way beyond what either of us could afford at the time. If anybody ever felt compelled, however, to mail a single can of TaB to a curious Canadian—I'd be very grateful  ;)

Lastly I just wanted to touch on your point about some sodas tasting "fake", with which I totally agree. It's always struck me as odd that the contention some people will hold against a soda (or other junk foods or beverages for that matter) would be it's tasting "fake". I guess I just can't imagine how someone would expect something like soda to taste natural and wholesome...seems they're maybe missing the point somewhere.

In fact I think Tom mentioned something to that effect a couple weeks back on the show, when he first brought up the show 'Adam Ruins Anything' and was mocking the idea that people might not realize that soda is unhealthy haha

bdb318

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Re: Diet Dr Pepper
« Reply #7 on: April 17, 2017, 09:02:55 AM »
Well, I might consider shipping you a TaB to Canada, were it not for the fact that the can would likely explode in transit and the shipping costs would be 20 times the cost of the soda itself. But if you plan any trips to New York in the future, I could certainly recommend a local vendor of this regional delicacy. (I'm not sure there is any demand for TaB outside of upper Manhattan these days, although I wouldn't be surprised if there were a few TaB hot spots in southern California still. Any non-NYC-based FOTs have any TaB sightings recently?)

marsdentrainfan

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Re: Diet Dr Pepper
« Reply #8 on: April 18, 2017, 12:27:07 AM »
Well, I might consider shipping you a TaB to Canada, were it not for the fact that the can would likely explode in transit and the shipping costs would be 20 times the cost of the soda itself. But if you plan any trips to New York in the future, I could certainly recommend a local vendor of this regional delicacy. (I'm not sure there is any demand for TaB outside of upper Manhattan these days, although I wouldn't be surprised if there were a few TaB hot spots in southern California still. Any non-NYC-based FOTs have any TaB sightings recently?)

Haha well I appreciate the thought anyways! I realize there are a lot of practical concerns. I would certainly appreciate any intel on what cities in the states TaB can be found in.

buffcoat

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Re: Diet Dr Pepper
« Reply #9 on: April 18, 2017, 12:51:14 PM »
I used to be a soda enthusiast, until I quit drinking it and immediately dropped 20 pounds.

I can tell you straight up that 6 months away from it and I wasn't be able to drink it at all. I have a sip every few months to remind me how weird it tastes.

I was a big fan of the "citrus" demo - your Mountain Dew/Code Red/Mello Yello. I think the all-too-brief Mello Yello Cherry might have been my all-time favorite.

New Coke was introduced because Diet Coke was so popular, and because it outperformed Classic Coke in taste tests. They underestimated people's taste (ha!) for nostalgia and unwillingness to change, even to something that they objectively liked better.

Huh. Imagine that. People choose something they know is suboptimal out of a sense of stubbornness and refusal to accept reality.
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akaJudge

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Re: Diet Dr Pepper
« Reply #10 on: April 18, 2017, 04:50:31 PM »
diet colas, in general, suck. the citrus based diet drinks are much more tolerable, like diet Orange Crush. my favorite is Hansens's diet kiwi/strawberry but it's hard to find. Diet Pepsi uses Splenda, and I drink that  because it doesn't have the aspartame aftertaste.
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buffcoat

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Re: Diet Dr Pepper
« Reply #11 on: April 18, 2017, 09:04:37 PM »
Me and my wife Elaine had just one bottle of Nesbitt's Lime Soda one summer, but a bee flew into it and we had to throw it away.
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Joe Rogaine

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Re: Diet Dr Pepper
« Reply #12 on: May 07, 2017, 02:48:04 PM »
Do you remember the ad campaign from the 90s that claimed, "Diet Dr Pepper tastes more like regular Dr Pepper"?

I was always confused by this, because it wasn't clear what the basis for comparison was. Does Diet Dr Pepper taste more like regular Dr Pepper than it previously tasted like regular Dr Pepper? Or does Diet Dr Pepper taste more like regular Dr Pepper than... other beverages that are neither Diet Dr Pepper nor regular Dr Pepper? Or does Diet Dr Pepper taste more like regular Dr Pepper than, say, Diet Coke taste like regular Coke?

This always bothered me. Perhaps this was the point. I'm still thinking about it decades later, I guess.

Diet doctor pepper was supposed to taste like regular Dr. Pepper