Here's Why McDonald's Coca-Cola Tastes So Great

From a spicy Sriracha Big Mac to fried chicken breakfast sandwiches, McDonald's has tested numerous new foods and menu changes over the last several months in an effort to lure new customers. But there's at least one item on the fast-food giant's menu that it already perfected a long time ago: fountain Coca-Cola. McDonald's serves what's arguably some of the best Coca-Cola out there and, apparently, there's a reason for why it's so great.

Turns out the top-notch quality of Coke at McDonald's is far from an accident. While you'd think that Coca-Cola and other fountain drinks are more or less sold the same way at every fast-food chain, McDonald's claims that its restaurants go above and beyond to ensure the drinks taste as good out of the fountain machine as they would out of a bottle. For example, McDonald's has its supply of Coke syrup delivered in stainless steel containers instead of the typical plastic packages used throughout the industry to help preserve its freshness, according to a report by The New York Times.

The painstaking process also involves attention to details like how the ingredients are stored, the temperature at which the Coke is kept in the machine, and even the straws McDonald's provides for drinking the stuff. McDonald's even has a page on its website dedicated to explaining why its Coke tastes so great. Here's the full explanation:

There are many reasons the Coca-Cola tastes so great at McDonald’s. We simply follow the guidelines set by Coca-Cola and take steps to ensure it tastes the same as when you buy it in a bottle. 

The water and Coca-Cola syrup are pre-chilled before entering our fountain dispensers with the ratio of syrup set to allow for ice to melt. We also keep our fountain beverage system cold so your drink can always be at the peak of refreshing. In order to ensure our drinks are always meeting a gold standard, we have proper filtration methods in place. 

There’s also our straw -- it’s slightly wider than a typical straw, so all that Coke taste can hit all your tastebuds.

McDonald's is not messing around. Of course, soda is far from the healthiest drink option, but if you're eating fast food anyway and feel like treating yourself, you might as well go all out, right? 

Relatedly, Mickey D's recently announced that any size drink will cost $1, starting in April. Just in case you were wondering what Mindy Kaling is talking about in that new ad.

h/t Spoon University

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Tony Merevick is Cities News Editor at Thrillist and generally avoids soda, but can remember how good McDonald's Coke tastes. Send news tips to and follow him on Twitter @tonymerevick.