My first experience with a Cherry flavored Coca-Cola was at Alpha Drugs, in Alpharetta, Georgia, when I was in Elementary School. My friend, Ross Stephens, would order it at the fountain and one day I did too, and I liked it!
This gave me just one more reason to go the drug store, besides the Chili Cheese Burgers, French Fries, Coke Floats and Comic Books. The actual Coca-Cola Cherry was not released until 1985. soda shops, diners, and pharmacy soda fountains had been serving them up for years, simply adding cherry-flavored syrup to a Coke. In 1970, the Kinks changed the lyric in “Lola” from Coca-Cola to Cherry Cola to appease British censures who didn’t allow product placement.
1985 was the same year as “New Coke”, at least Coca-Cola Cherry is delicious. It was the first of Coke adding things to, what some would call perfection, like vanilla, lime, raspberry, lemon, black cherry and orange. Coke tested the first Cherry Coke at the 1982 World’s Fair in Knoxville, Tennessee. In 2007 it was renamed Coca-Cola Cherry. Diet Cherry Coke was introduced in 1986, and renamed “Diet Coke Cherry” in 2005 and Coca-Cola Cherry Zero in 2007.
To play on the Transformers hype at the time, in 1985 Coke came out with a transforming Coke can that become the Cherry Coke Robot.