If you are in desperation, cocktail vending machines are a pretty well-established way to obtain an overpriced drink in a slow-serving bar. They are filled with premixed versions of established, run-of-the-mill cocktail concoctions.
As an alternative, today’s invention is a vending machine which allows patrons to dispense a combination of ‘units’ of a number of different drinks (via a set of electronically-controlled ‘optics’).
A customer could select, via a brightly-lit control panel, units of a wide range of drinks (up to a maximum number corresponding to the volume of a glass). They could then name this combination in some ceative way, by typing it in and thus making that drink (and a list of its contents) available for selection by other customers later.
This would encourage experimentation with taste combinations and increase custom. The machine would also contain many fruit juices and certain combinations (eg a pint of vodka) would be forbidden. Customers’ cocktail ‘designs’ could be displayed in order of popularity, just as games machines do, further increasing incentives to experiment.
If health promotion was a priority, it might be possible to list first, those recipes for drinks which contain no alcohol and healthier ingredients .
Guinness shandy, anyone?