It actually probably isn't right to say "...Of The Future" in the headline of this story, since the Coca-Cola Freestyle drink dispensers are very much of the present throughout most of the Shore now.

I remember when I first saw one of these DIY drink mixers, it was at a Moe's Southwest Grill in Middlesex County (which I keep trying to get to come to Ocean County!) a number of years ago.

It was quite a novelty, and most of the customers spent plenty of time exploring all of the options.

But now, the machines are pretty ubiquitous throughout the area. First, I saw them show up at the Five Guys Burgers locations in Brick and Toms River, then they came all at once to most of the Wawa locations throughout the whole Shore. I spotted the one above at the Atlanta Bread Company in Toms River.

The nice part is the fact that customers are no longer limited to the 6-8 choices of the old fashioned drink stations. And, if you're not the soft drink type, you can also pick from lemonade, sports drinks, seltzer, and even flavored water.

There is a bit of a learning curve, and I still see people trying to make sense of all of the choices, but once you figure the system out it's nice to have so many options.

So what do you think of the new generation of soft drink dispensers, just another way to get us hooked on unhealthy soda, or a unique way to expand our choices? Comment below and chime in!


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