In the ongoing beverage wars, established soft drink dynasties like Coke are struggling against booming industries like natural sodas and seltzer waters. This has caused Coke to dig deep into the innovation well, coming up with zesty fruit flavors for Diet Coke last year, and now the first new flavor for classic Coca-Cola in 10 years: Orange Vanilla Coke and Orange Vanilla Coke Zero Sugar.
The orange-vanilla combo is most famous for its origins in the classic Dreamsicle popsicle (orange popsicle on the outside, vanilla ice cream or ice milk on the inside). On the company’s blog, Coke theorizes that even in a tough market, Cherry Coke and Vanilla Coke are still doing well, so why not look to another throwback combo? Coca-Cola brand director Kate Carpenter explains on the blog, “We wanted to bring back positive memories of carefree summer days… That’s why we leaned into the orange-vanilla flavor combination—which is reminiscent of the creamy orange popsicles we grew up loving, but in a classically Coke way.”
The new products will be available February 25, so we’ll all have a chance to check it out eventually—in the meantime, may we suggest Polar Seltzer Orange-Vanilla, which tastes surprisingly Dreamsicle-like? Kathie Lee and Hoda already tried out the new flavor on The Today Show a few days ago—unfortunately, they weren’t big fans (Hoda’s immediate reaction: “Yuck”).