Can vs glass bottle vs plastic bottle? Ranking all the ways you can get a fizzy drink
To paraphrase Bob Marley, the sun is shining, the weather is sweet, and it makes you want to grab a cold carbonated flavoured non-alcoholic beverage with either sugar or sweeteners.
However, not all portions of fizzy drinks are created equal. Coke, Pepsi, or whatever you are drinking, can come in a can, a plastic bottle, or even dispensed from a soda fountain by a friendly cinema employee. This can all greatly influence both the taste and experience of your drink.
So, in honour of this glorious weather, here is the definitive ranking of all the ways you can get a Coke.
Post-mix is, for those of you who have never worked in the service industry, is what you get in a cinema or a fast food place or Nando’s, where they unflavoured soda water and thick treacly cola-gloop and squirt it directly into a glass. Half the time the establishment will mess up and either barely put any syrup in and you get water-y brown tasteless liquid, or put far too much in and get diabetes in a glass. Urgh.
5: Two-litre plastic bottle
Sure, the first glass out of a freshly-opened two-litre plastic bottle is absolutely fine. But the horror comes two days later. The bottle has been sitting out on the side. No one put it back in the fridge. Now it is flat. And warm. This is not good. The only acceptable option is to drink 2000 ml in one sitting, which no dentist would ever condone.
4: 500ml plastic bottle
Fizzy drinks in plastic bottles get a bad rap. Ok, David Attenborough is totally right, we need to cut down on disposable plastic. But if we put the dolphins to one side for a second, a single use 500ml bottle is a perfectly acceptable receptacle for soft drinks. True, there are other materials higher up this list that feel nicer, but provided it is ice cold, it is all good. Plus you have the convenience bonus of being able to reseal the vessel.
3: Metal bottle
These are rarer than a wild Mewtwo, but definitely a pleasant surprise when you come across one. Aluminium bottles seem to be most common for light beers in American sports bars, but Coca-Cola are increasingly rolling them out. They retain the ergonomic joy of holding a Coke bottle, even if there’s a slight metallic tang on your lips.
2: Glass bottle
For many, cola in a glass bottle is the ultimate decadence when it comes to fizzy drink consumption. And its joys are undeniable. But I put this to you – is it not somewhat fuelled by nostalgia? In your head, you go back to drinking Orangina from a glass bottle on a family holiday to Europe as a kid. In reality? It’s clinking your teeth on a glass Diet Coke bottle in an overcast pub garden.
It chills quickly. It fits snuggly in your hand. The ‘tsssstt’ of opening the ring pull is never not satisfying. The can of Coke is a design classic that has been around for over 60 years, and shows no signs of going away. Just always recycle, please.