Review of Coca Cola Freestyle at Burger King UK – Coke Freestyle UK
What they say:
You already know you can “have it your way” when choosing a sandwich at Burger King. Now you can do the same with your soft drink.
Price: Bought as part of a meal + free refills.
Calories: Depends on the flavour!
|Coke Freestyle at BK…|
Coke Freestyle has been available in the UK for a few years now, but I was yet to try it. However, that all changed on a trip to Burger King today! I remember being stupidly excited when I discovered Coke Freestyle even existed. I’m a typical girl. Always want what I can’t have. This especially rings true with soda, and it pains me (no really, it does) that we’re usually given a meagre choice of fizzy drinks in the UK, compared to the endless stream of fun, fruity flavours you can get across the pond – unless you want to fork out an extortionate amount of money for a can of imported soda from an American sweet shop. Bit of a first world problem, but I need my grape Fanta fix, ok?!
Thankfully, Coke Freestyle popped up in the UK, which offers over 100 flavours as standard on their sleek looking touch-screen machines. These can be supplied in a few different colours (although not for home use, gutted), and the one I got the chance to play with today stood out in a racy Italian red. Unsurprising then that the manufacturing company behind the machines (Pininfarina) are renowned for Italian automotive design. Swish! As well as the 4 iconic Coca Cola options (classic, diet, Zero, and diet caffeine-free) you also have Sprite, Fanta, Fanta Still, Dr Pepper, Powerade, and Schweppes Lemonade, not to mention a ‘zero’ or diet option for all those mentioned.
The initial selection screen gives you four categories to start with; all drink, low/no calorie, caffeine free, and fruit-flavoured. I’m personally an addict for anything cherry flavoured, but I was curious to see all that the machine had to offer before I limited my selection to one flavour. I was actually expecting the range to be a lot more limited – it seems to be common knowledge that the typical UK palette can only handle a few simple flavours, which was backed up straight away as the first two people I saw using the machine both selected plain diet coke… Don’t get me started. Thankfully a group of likely lads soon huddled round the machine and discussed the merits of mixing say, Coke and Fanta together. That’s more like it!
In all honesty the only downside to the experience was the amount of choice on offer. The touch screen interface was brilliant slick and easy to use, but how is a girl supposed to choose between Cherry Coke, Cherry Sprite, Cherry Fanta etc. etc. You also have at least 6 flavour options for each drink (excluding Powerade [3 flavours] and Dr Pepper/Diet Dr Pepper [original only]). Decisions, decisions! Incidentally, selecting cherry flavour gives you no less than 13 drinks to choose from. I could spend hours in front of this machine!
I managed to grab a table right in front of the machine, and couldn’t help observing how people used it. It still seemed a bit daunting to quite a few customers (or maybe they were just intimidated by the choice!) It was as if they weren’t used to this kind of technology, or so many options, but the machines have been around for a while now, and in an age where most toddlers can easily navigate around a tablet computer I doubt this would be a problem for much longer. Incidentally it seemed to be customers over a certain age who a) needed a bit of guidance when it came to using the machine and b) selected plain diet Coke. Before I get hounded for being ageist I’d like to point out that my gramps could build a computer blindfolded – this was just my observation on the day!
|Burger Lad had a Coke Zero with Lemon…|
By far the best part of all? Burger King offers free refills on their Coke Freestyle machines! All that initial um-ing and ah-ing over whether to choose Coke with Cherry and Vanilla, or Grape Fanta, or Powerade Zero Berry & Tropical and it turns out you can try as many as I like. Definition of winning, eventually leading to definition of sugar overload, but hey, still winning! Right, time to start a Twitter campaign to get Cherry Root Beer added to the list….
|Coming to a BK near you soon…|
28 restaurants currently feature Coke Freestyle. As many as 25% of Burger King restaurants in the UK will feature Coke Freestyle machines by the end of 2015. And those worried that you’ll miss out going through the drive-thru, don’t worry as it is available there too…