My coworker Sean and I were presented with two unlabeled paper cups of Coke--one of which was Mexican Coke, the other was regular Coke from the fountain machine. I noted that they smelled pretty much the same. Upon tasting, the cup on my left tasted more familiar to me, like the Coke gummi candies I used to eat as a kid. However, the cup on my right seemed to be more refreshing and fizzy. I preferred the one on my right.
It was revealed that both Sean and I preferred regular fountain Coke, which was a shock to both of us. The candy-like taste of the Mexican Coke could possibly be attributed to the cane sugar. Also, the appeal of the fountain Coke could possibly be attributed to the freshness and coldness of the carbonated water from the fountain rather than the actual flavor profile of the drink. What we learned from this is that the freshness of a drink has a bigger impact than any subtle difference in flavor between cane sugar and HFCS.
However, since our goal is to isolate the difference between just the sugar, we will try this test again on Monday while trying to minimize these other variables.