Maverik Playing 'Dirty' at the Fountain

Utah retailer riding local trend in beverage mixology

NORTH SALT LAKE CITY, Utah -- The customers at Maverik convenience stores are trying it "dirty"--with their fountain beverages, that is. Dirty Coke, a grassroots trend in fountain beverage mixology, is gaining mass appeal in the Intermountain West, the company said.

Making a drink "dirty" usually involves the addition of some type of alcoholic beverage to the cola, but in Utah where Maverik's core business is located, it means adding coconut syrup and fresh squeezed limes.

Maverik said it is bucking the trend in an industry where the fountain program is viewed by many as a commodity--its success driven largely by discounted pricing strategies. While Maverik understands value plays a factor, it said that it also recognizes the allure of an ice cold refreshment made to the customer's precise flavor preferences.

"I don't have to explain to someone across the counter that I want my cup filled with three-quarters Diet Coke, one-quarter Regular Coke and a squeeze of fresh lime," one customer told the retailer. "I just do it myself."

Recognizing this important aspect of the fountain experience, Maverik seeks every opportunity to allow customers to become their own mixologist, it said. So when some local establishments began offering "Dirty Coke" as a drink option, Maverik was quick to add it to the chain's menu. 

"We've added fresh cut limes and brought in flavored syrups including coconut to all of our 255 stores," said Rich Green, "customer fanatics director," who oversees Maverik's fountain program. "Now every Maverik customer can try it dirty!"

North Salt Lake City, Utah-based Maverik--an "outdoor-adventure" branded convenience store and gas station chain--has nearly 250 stores in 10 states and is one of the largest independent fuel marketer in the Intermountain West. Maverik currently employs 3,700 adventure guides, and it plans to grow in its current trade area and expand into more markets, including Las Vegas, Denver and Spokane, Wash.