IRVING, Texas —7-Eleven Inc. has steeped its beverage program with global flavors. And with its new Chai Tea Latte, the convenience-store retailer has drawn menu inspiration from India.
The tea’s masala chai flavor comes from a blend of cardamom, cinnamon, ginger and cloves. The drink combines the black tea, milk and sweetener.
Ahead of its launch, the hot dispensed beverage was taste tested against national coffee purveyors. “We worked several months with flavor scientists to develop an exclusive chai recipe that offers the best balance of sweet and spice,” said Michelle Cram, 7-Eleven senior category manager of hot beverages. “In blind taste tests, 7-Eleven chai tea compared very favorably against well-known restaurants and national beverage brands. If our customers love it as much as we think they will, chai could become a popular year-round offering.”
Chai, the Hindi word for tea, has grown in popularity in recent years, especially among women, millennials, Gen Z and Hispanic consumers, according to the company.
Now that the chai flavor trend has reached maturity, operators have begun to fold new flavors into the traditionally Indian spice blend. Top chai flavor pairings include orange, caramel and strawberry, according to Technomic’s Menu Monitor.
As with the rest of 7-Eleven’s beverages, the price will depend on size.
The product launch follows 7-Eleven's addition of Chips Ahoy Hot Chocolate in January.