The Genius Cold Beverage Hack Cracker Barrel Stopped Using

You're at Cracker Barrel in the middle of the lunch hour. Maybe it was all those biscuits, or maybe it was looking through the menu at all those Southern comfort food-based entrees of chicken and dumplings or salty pot roast, but you're feeling like you need a drink. So you decide to order a glass of lemonade to start off. When your waitress finally brings out your drink, you're so thirsty you're almost ready to take it off her hands yourself. The lemonade is tangy, sweet, and most importantly, it's ice cold. You're so thirsty you almost chug the entire thing without asking this one basic question: Just how did Cracker Barrel get it so cold like that?

Cracker Barrel prides itself on serving delicious and "made-from-scratch" comfort food in a rustic Southern-styled setting, and it's darn good at what it does. But for all its talk about being old-fashioned and traditional, the chain hasn't been afraid to take on some innovation to keep ahead of the game. For example, in 2016, Cracker Barrel began to focus more on appealing to millennials in multicultural communities through "grassroots community programs" (via Food Business News). During the response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the chain began to sell beers, wines, and other spirits for the first time in its history to respond to a now unpredictable market (via National Restaurant Association). 

But there's one very simple drink-based innovation that the chain no longer seems to do, despite it being popular with its customers.

Cracker Barrel used to freeze its mugs

Have you ever put a glass or a mug in your freezer for a little bit until it got all frosty? This way, whatever you drank out of that mug would be as cold as possible without it being diluted by ice cubes. Cracker Barrel used to do this same technique with all of its drinks — until, one day, the practice seemed to suddenly stop. The shift in drink policy seemed to happen around 2018, as some noted on Facebook.

"What happened to the frosty mugs?" asked one concerned Cracker Barrel customer.

"I second that. I pulled over the other day for a root bear and I was floored when it wasn't served in a frosted mug," described another user. "I don't know they reason behind this but this decision was a big mistake."

"Please bring back frosty mug or I won't go back," was the stiff ultimatum of another customer.

Cracker Barrel hasn't given any official explanation as to why they did away with frosty mugs. In fact, the chain seemed to take its chilled mugs as a point of pride, advertising apple cider in one of its classic "frozen mugs" in 2016 (via Twitter). Maybe placing mugs in the freezers was too much of a time-wasting activity? Maybe it was because servers didn't like handling frozen mugs with their other orders? No one can really say, but it seems some people are a bit frostier over this change than others.