If you’ve been to Frary Dining Hall at Pomona recently, you may have noticed a welcome addition: now compensating for the facility’s lack of soft-serve frozen delights is a brand-new Coca-Cola Freestyle machine. This wondrous delight may look like a Scandinavian-engineered spaceship, but from its touch-screen depths emerge 106 flavors of Coca-Cola product. I headed over to Frary on a number of occasions to investigate the machine; I have yet to sample all of the products (I haven’t tasted Hi-C in years and hope to keep it that way), but here are some of my initial thoughts on the available beverages in the classic Coca-Cola range.


Coke: Tasted the same. +1 for consistency.


Coke Cherry: Similar to Cherry Coke from a can, but perhaps a bit sweeter.


Coke Vanilla: I love Vanilla Coke and overly-sweetened beverages, so this was very much to my liking. Some of my friends found it too sweet.


Coke Lime: This one had an awful, bitter aftertaste. The Diet Coke with Lime (see below) was an enormous improvement.


Coke Cherry Vanilla: Sweet but not too sweet, and somehow fruity at the same time. Surprisingly palatable!


Coke Raspberry: This was remarkably tasty, and the raspberry flavor actually complemented the cola base better than the classic cherry flavoring.


Coke Orange: Tasted like the machine had accidentally mixed Coca-Cola with Fanta. I almost spit it out.


The machine also offers Caffeine Free Coca-Cola, Diet Coke and Coke Zero as bases for the above flavors. I next sampled the range of flavors in Diet Coke.


Diet Coke Cherry: Very good, with the fruit flavor more evident than in the original Coca-Cola.


Diet Coke Lime: Very similar to the canned Diet Coke with Lime, and a far better choice than the sugared version in the Freestyle (less bitterness comes through).


Diet Coke Vanilla: Again, the Diet Coke base carried the vanilla flavor better than the original Coca-Cola base, although the vanilla was still very strong.


Diet Coke Orange: I hated this. Then again, I’m not a fan of orange flavoring, although it wasn’t as overpowering as I would expect.


Diet Coke Cherry Vanilla: Too artificial and saccharine even for me! Pass on this one.


Diet Coke Raspberry: The raspberry flavor in this drink was more prominent than in the regular Coke with raspberry, and the flavor was more mild than the cherry version. I liked this one a lot, and it’s not available in cans or bottles so be sure to try it!


Overall, I was absolutely a fan of the new Freestyle at Frary. In addition to my intensive research on the original Coca-Cola flavors, I also sampled some of the Sprite, Fanta and other flavors (the Vanilla Barq’s is absolutely worth a taste). There are some creative options to be had—Sprite Raspberry comes to mind—and it’s worth the short line to try your luck at a new flavor.


  1. Thanks for this reporting! I’ve compiled my list of reviews, perhaps we can crowd source a review for EVERY FLAVOR IN THE magic Frary Soda Machine?

    Water-Flavorless and Bland. I really expected more. They must’ve messed up the Hydrogen molecules in here. I’d rather drink the tears of a crying Pitzer student.

    Water Orange-Has all the nutritional and flavor contents of orange juice WITHOUT the calories. I actually felt myself getting skinnier. Drink this instead of working out.

    Water Cherry-An literal explosion of flavor. I actually filled up a gallon of this just so I can drink it naked in my dorm late in the evening.

    Water Raspberry-Tasted like Raspberry

    Water lime-Tasted like water with lemon. Going to sue coke for false advertising.

  2. “…and it’s worth the short line to try your luck at a new flavor.”
    I disagree, I hate having to wait in line for this new machine because ITS NOW THE ONLY SODA MACHINE IN THE DINING HALL.

    • Save soda, drink water. And save your teeth, your stomach lining, and you future shapeless form.

  3. As someone whose work has recently been published in the Harvard Business Review, I would like to say that this article is an utter disappointment. It lacks depth, thoroughness, and overall utility. Unless a majority of the post is hidden, I only see 13 flavors reviewed. The introduction mentions there are 106. Simple arithmetic reveals there are 93 flavors that have yet to be reviewed by the Forum. But before you rush to Frary to complete the task you should have in the first place, I would like to recommend that you do not because your current review lacks accuracy. See below:

    “Coke Lime: This one had an awful, bitter aftertaste.”

    If you tasted bitterness in this sweet and savory beverage, you must have ageusia, a disease which prevents you from detecting any taste. In fact, the combination of High Fructose Corn Syrup and Phosphoric Acid neutralizes the Citric Acid produced by lime flavoring making the bitter taste you have described scientifically impossible.

    In my personal experience, I found this machine to be completely inefficient as there is only one spout to service a multitude of thirsty customers. Pomona should learn a lesson from their economically competent neighbors.

    Alas, I must return to my chambers to add the finishing touches to my next article for the Harvard Business Review.

    • You’re not the real Conor Barclay. The REAL Conor Barclay wouldn’t say “Harvard Business Review.” He’d say – “published in the HBR” Clearly. Both showing his prowess of a subject and your lack thereof.

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