QUESTION: What coffee machine does 7-11 use? I was in there recently and they have this machine now that has whole beans in a hopper on top and it makes an individual cup for you when you press a button. It was really good! – Earnest L
ANSWER: Many convenience stores and gas stations have seriously upped their game in the past few years. We’ve written about Racetrac, Circle K and QuikTrip in the past, and which Swiss made machine they were using, so we were curious to know if 7-11 was using the same machine. They are not!
7-11 has gone with a different commercial bean to cup coffee machine from the Swiss manufacturer Franke. At the store we visited in Dallas, they were using the Franke A800 Fresh Brew commercial machine.
At the store we visited, 7-11 had the Franke machine set up with three different bean choices — the house blend, Columbian or the 7-Brazilian-Blend. The machine was also set up to make regular hot coffee or iced coffee. After you choose your beans, the machine gives you the option of room for cream or not. If you choose iced coffee, the machine instructs you to fill the cup 75 percent full of ice. If you follow those instructions, it fills up your cup perfectly.
I tried the house blend as a hot coffee and the Columbian as an iced coffee and both of them were very, very good. I was surprised at how good the coffee is, and very pleased, because that store is only a few minutes away from my workplace.
Convenience store coffee has gotten so much better recently that it has changed my own habits. Where I would in the past look for a Starbucks on a road trip, it is much easier to know that I can stop at several different major gas station and convenience store brands and get a very high quality cup of coffee at a low price, with quick self service. It’s easy to grab your own coffee and get right back on the road.