Variety may be the spice of life, but now it’s sweetening up our existence, too. For the past few months Coca-Cola has been slowly rolling out its new Coca-Cola Freestyle machines and as self-proclaimed Soda Connoisseurs, we couldn’t be more thrilled.
The Freestyle machines popping up in fast-food and fast-casual restaurants in California, Georgia, Illinois, Texas and Utah, with more locations slated in the next few months, so keep an eye out (or a mouth open). The units look like the lovechildren of standard Coke machines and personal computers, each with one big sexy Coca-Cola ribbon up the side. Touch-screen technology allows users to select from 16 major brands and then customize further with additional choices.
For example, select the Coca-Cola icon and you are presented with an additional six choices, from plain old Coke to Cherry Coke to varieties with Orange, Raspberry, Vanilla or Lime. Select Diet Coke, Caffeine-Free Diet Coke, Sprite or Fanta and get the same, and sometimes even more, opportunities to flavorize your soda. There are over 106 options to be exact.
That’s because the machines don’t use traditional syrup, but concentrated ingredient cartridges that mix with water and sweetener at the dispensing point. Of course, you can always go off-script and mix up whatever crazy concoction comes to mind. Perhaps half Minute Maid Strawberry Lemonade and half Sprite with Peach? Or a Coke Arnold Palmer (half Coke and half lemonade). Or maybe the Richard Simmons (Diet Coke, Sprite Zero with Grape, Diet Barq’s and Fanta Zero Fruit Punch). The possibilities are quite literally endless. And dentists everywhere are celebrating!
There’s an ice-maker built in, too, so it’s a one-stop in-store destination for almost all your beverage needs. We just hope they share the technology with others.
Just think how exciting this would be if it were filled with booze and mixers? Now that would be our dream machine.