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The secret recipe of Coke has been hidden and locked down for 125 years.
But apparently, not anymore. This American Life says they've found the
ingredients that make up the delicious bubbly cola and have revealed it to
our delight.

The story starts with John Pemberton, a Civil War veteran who's credited
with inventing Coca-Cola. His original recipe was written down in a recipe
book of various ointments and medicines that was passed down from
generation to generation.

A photograph of that recipe, from that very recipe book, was taken in the
Feb. 18, 1979, edition of the Atlanta-Journal Constitution and only
recently came to light when Ira Glass from This American Life stumbled
upon it. Glass tracked down other people who claimed to have discovered
the recipe as well and though they didn't match up exactly, they were so
strikingly similar that Glass concluded that this recipe was the original.
Here it is:

The recipe:
Fluid extract of Coca: 3 drams USP
Citric acid: 3 oz
Caffeine: 1 oz
Sugar: 30 (unclear quantity)
Water: 2.5 gal
Lime juice: 2 pints, 1 quart
Vanilla: 1 oz
Caramel: 1.5 oz or more for color

The secret 7X flavor (use 2 oz of flavor to 5 gals syrup):
Alcohol: 8 oz
Orange oil: 20 drops
Lemon oil: 30 drops
Nutmeg oil: 10 drops
Coriander: 5 drops
Neroli: 10 drops
Cinnamon: 10 drops

Coke has become infamous in guarding their secret recipe with tales of the
recipe being under 24 hour surveillance, Coca-Cola executives only knowing
half the formula or that the two people who know the recipe can never fly
together. It's added to the allure of Coke, for sure, but there's also
some truth to the that. When Asa Candler, an early Coke President, bought
the original formula from Pemberton in 1887, he was so paranoid about
people stealing the recipe that he ordered that the recipe could never be
written down again. He also removed all labels from the ingredient bottles
and went through company mail to see if anyone was snitching.

Truth be told though, it's impossible to fully replicate Coke's recipe
because there's one ingredient only Coca-Cola can get: fluid extract of
coca (which is coca leaves stripped of cocaine). Only one factory can
process those leaves and only Coca-Cola has a special deal with the DEA
that allows them to use it.