What wine was in Coca Cola?

Answered by John Hunt

In the early stages of Coca-Cola’s development, John Pemberton, a pharmacist from Atlanta, created a beverage called Pemberton’s French Wine Coca. This concoction was inspired by Vin Mariani, a popular French wine-based tonic that was known for its invigorating properties. Pemberton aimed to create a similar product that would appeal to American consumers.

Pemberton’s French Wine Coca gained popularity among the public, as it was believed to have medicinal benefits and provided a refreshing experience. However, the introduction of Prohibition in Georgia in 1886 posed a significant challenge for Pemberton’s beverage. The new legislation prohibited the sale and consumption of alcoholic beverages, which meant that Pemberton had to adapt his recipe accordingly.

To comply with the new regulations, Pemberton replaced the wine in his recipe with a non-alcoholic syrup. By doing so, he was able to create a version of his beverage that could be legally sold and consumed even during Prohibition. This modified recipe marked the birth of the iconic Coca-Cola we know today.

The specific type of wine that was originally used in Pemberton’s French Wine Coca is not widely documented. However, it is believed to have been a fortified wine, which is a wine that has been infused with additional alcohol, such as brandy. Fortified wines were commonly used in medicinal tonics during that time period.

It is important to note that the wine used in Pemberton’s original recipe was present for its flavor and potential medicinal properties, rather than for its alcoholic content. The non-alcoholic syrup that replaced the wine in the revised recipe aimed to retain the flavor profile and overall experience of the original beverage.

While the exact details of the wine in Coca-Cola’s early recipe may not be readily available, understanding the historical context and the reasons behind the recipe modification provides insight into the evolution of this beloved soft drink. The substitution of wine with a non-alcoholic syrup allowed Pemberton’s creation to survive and thrive, ultimately leading to the enduring success of Coca-Cola.