7-Eleven opened a store that sells fresh smoothies and street tacos on demand
A taco store on every corner? Sign me up.
While the new “etail” companies such as Amazon toy with cashier-less, cash-less stores that are more like a robotic pantry than an actual store, that doesn’t mean the future of convenience shopping is a dystopian hellscape where your only (semi)human interactions are with your voice assistant.
7-Eleven, literally the franchise that put convenience into the convenience store, is going a different way. The chain just opened a “lab store” in Dallas, Texas, and it’s totally off the chain, man.
When was the last time you walked into a store and were actually greeted by the aroma of in-store fresh baked cookies that didn’t come from a can?
Yeah, I can’t recall either, but this new test store does just that. There’s also a selection of palatable wine, frozen yogurt next to the ubiquitous Slurpee machine, craft beer (including a testing area) and all the millennial-loved drinks that nobody in their right mind would actually drink if they weren’t suffering from pesticide poisoning, like kombucha, nitro cold brew, organic tea, cold-pressed juices, and even aguas frescas.
Heck, there’s even a patio area with an in-store taco truck. Well, not really a truck but an in-store branch of the Laredo Taco Company, which 7-Eleven took over in 2018. Yes, that means there will virtually be a taco truck on (almost) every corner eventually if the lab store is successful. Think of it as an artisanal 7-Eleven. Maybe they’ll start calling the Slurpees “Hand-pulled” and offer flavors like avocado toast…
A craft beer section with fillable growlers? Sign me up, it’s a far cry from the reheated, cooked-sometime-last-week hotdogs that are perpetually turning on the usual 7-Eleven countertop. Heck, maybe they could add an “adult-only” Slurpee range with craft beer, cocktails, and frozen tequila to go with the tacos. Where’s my royalty check, eh?
Oh, I guess I was wrong about the dystopian future hellscape. While the 7-Eleven lab store does have scan-and-pay tech that enables shoppers to pay with their smartphones without talking to a human, I think I’m okay with that if I can drink while eating tacos.
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