If you've ever slurped on a coke from McDonald's alongside your Big Mac and fries, you might have noticed it tastes rather different at the fast-food chain compared to any other can or bottle bought from the shop.
You're not crazy for thinking it - there's a reason to explain the concept we've been trying to wrap our tastebuds around for decades.
And it's not what you may think.
From the containers that the Coca-Cola syrup is stored in all the way through to the types of straws used - every single part of the journey has a reason.
To get to the bottom of it, we need to start right at the beginning when the fast-food chain and the drinks company first partnered up.
Coca-Cola entered the McDonald's menu in the 1950s and the two giant companies have since developed several different processes that are entirely unique to the way the chain restaurant operates compared to others.
Since that fateful collab, there are now 10 different processes that explain why the product differs inside the Golden Arches compared to anywhere else.
The first reason is that unlike the canned drinks, McDonald's coke is not pre-mixed.
Fountain coke is mixed 'the moment they start pouring from the tap'.
Due to this, the carbonated water and syrup are 'stored and dispensed by the machines separately' and only merge in the stream that fills your cup.
Many believe this process leads to a 'fresher flavour'.
Secondly, McDonald's makes a huge effort to standardise its syrup level measurements - strictly adhering to 40 grams of sugar per every small coke.
That brings us onto the third point which revolves around all things ice.
The syrup-to-water ratio is so well-thought out that it even accounts for melting ice, with McDonald's going to great lengths to make sure its coke meets a certain standard and that dilution won't affect the overall flavour.
In order to slow down this dilution, McDonald’s pre-chills its syrup which is also the reason why the beverage stays fizzy for longer.
The fifth reason is that McDonald's uses 'steel storage tanks' for its syrup as opposed to plastic bags like most other restaurants.
This basically allows for the product to stay as a fresh as possible for as long as possible and ensures flavour consistency across all locations.
Coming up as the sixth reason as to why McDonald's coke tastes better is the carbonated water.
Sparing no expense, even the water used to mix the syrup is kept at a 'chilled temperature' due to insulated tubing - allowing for fountain to be within a constant range of 0.5 to 3.3 degrees celsius.
Alongside this, carbon dioxide levels are kept at a high to completely 'optimise' bubble levels - adding the slightly crisper sensation that many attribute to McDonald's coke.
The eighth reason is down to the chain's 'advanced water filtration system' that ensures the cleanest water possible to establish a 'uniform beverage standard' no matter what your water source is.
The final two reasons revolve around the final product - quite literally - with a huge emphasis placed on the packaging itself.
The chain uses 'wider straws' than any other fast-food restaurant which allows for 'bigger sips'. This is so that customers can let their beverage 'wash over their taste buds' more efficiently.
And, finally, the tenth reason is that McDonald's plastic drinks cups are able to 'return carbonation' better than glass containers or aluminium cans.
Unlike other packaging, the plastic cup is not nearly as porous and efficiently 'traps the gas' of the carbonated beverage.
So, there you have it, you're not crazy for believing McDonald's coke tastes so different from other versions of the same drink.Featured Image Credit: Beata Zawrzel/NurPhoto via Getty Images