IRVING, Texas — 7-Eleven’s sixth Evolution Store is living up to its name as it hosts the first-ever Laredo Taco Company drive-thru restaurant, marking the first time the convenience-store chain has operated a corporate-owned drive-thru at one of its stores.
This restaurant in Dallas, which also will have indoor seating, shares space with the newest 7-Eleven Evolution Store. These 7-Eleven “lab” stores are committed to innovation, and no two are exactly alike. Laredo Taco opened at the retailer's first 7-Eleven Evolution Store in Dallas two years ago.
"This is delicious news for customers of both 7-Eleven and Laredo Taco Company," said Chris Tanco, 7–Eleven executive vice president and COO. "7-Eleven is known as a beverage destination, and Laredo Taco Company makes some of the best quick-serve Mexican food anywhere."
Drive-thru hours are from 5 a.m. to 10 p.m., Sunday through Thursday and 5 a.m. to 11 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, with an all-day menu and meals that include a side and a small drink. It serves breakfast from 5 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. and features a wide variety of breakfast tacos and breakfast bowls.
At this new drive-thru, customers can order a Slurpee with their meal, which is also a first for the 7-Eleven beverage. If breakfast is too early for a Slurpee drink, customers can choose coffee. Hot or iced coffee and espresso drinks such as lattes and cappuccinos are also available. Other beverage choices include aguas frescas, fountain drinks, iced tea, Topo Chico sparkling mineral water and other bottled and canned drinks such as water, juice, energy and sports drinks. All told, drive-thru customers can choose from more than 30 beverages and even more food options and combinations.
Inside the restaurant, diners can toast their tacos with wine-based frozen margaritas, beer or wine for on-premise consumption.
As a beverage destination, 7-Eleven is always looking for new thirst-quenchers, and the Evolution Stores are where some of new drink ideas make their debuts. Refreshing smoothies, shakes, sodas, flavored still and sparkling waters and cold brew coffee can be customized as well. Unique sodas are a new Evolution Store feature, with flavors such as ginger beer, black cherry, pineapple coconut, diet key lime and diet cherry vanilla. Sparkling and still water flavors include lemon ginger, strawberry rose, coconut lime, cucumber mint and mango.
Each 7-Eleven Evolution Store is an experiential testing ground, where customers can try and buy the retailer's latest innovations in a pioneering store format. All include a restaurant concept, and the retailer continues to tweak the design and product mix based on customer feedback and shopping habits.
In addition to Laredo Taco Company, this 7-Eleven Evolution Store offers an assortment of exclusive products, services and features customized to the neighborhoods and customers they serve. There also are murals painted by local muralist Tex Moton.
The new store is one of a growing number to offer mobile checkout and delivery via the 7Rewards loyalty program.
"While opening the first Laredo Taco Company drive-thru restaurant with a 7-Eleven store would be exciting any time, we think customers looking for socially distanced ways to grab breakfast, lunch and dinner will really appreciate it now," Tanco said. "Soon I hope, ordering tacos and beverages for in-person get-togethers with family and friends will be the norm once again."
7-Eleven acquired the Laredo Taco Company restaurants along with Stripes convenience stores in South Texas as part of the in 2018.
- 7-Eleven is No. 1 on CSP’s 2021 Top 40 update to the 2020 Top 202 ranking of c-store chains by store count.
Irving, Texas-based 7-Eleven operates, franchises or licenses more than 72,800 stores in 17 countries, including 12,000 in North America, with more than 9,300 in the United States.