Swig quenches thirst with ‘dirty’ drinks

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“…Can I have a swig of your drink?” 

This was the question Nicole Tanner’s husband asked, sparking the name for Swig, a local drive-thru destination.

Tanner and her husband opened Swig in April 2010 and have made quick headway. Offering fountain drinks, hot drinks, fruit smoothies, baked treats and ice cream, Swig is a one-stop shop to cool down.

Tanner said she and her husband are big Diet Coke drinkers, which was the inspiration behind Swig.

“We knew that there was a need for a good, fun drive-thru, and we knew that there were other people out there, like us, that enjoyed a good fountain drink,” Tanner said.

Tanner said the best-seller is by far the dirty Dr. Pepper. Dirty means coconut flavoring was added.

“You can dirty up any drink,” Tanner said. “Put coconut in it, and it is awesome. I dirty up my Diet Coke all the time.”

Loyal customer Howard Borst said Swig offers a variety of refreshments for every person. His personal favorite is the mango Mountain Dew. Flavors are added to drinks as either syrups or purees, but Borst said he prefers the syrup.

Kaymi Hardy, a junior dental hygiene major from St. George, said she prefers the puree. Hardy had a Swig drink in hand while she talked about how exceptional Swig is.

“I like the raspberry peach Mountain Dew,” Hardy said. “I just think it’s really unique how they put the flavors with Mountain Dew.”

Tanner said people thought the location of Swig, 989 East Tabernacle Street, would be unsuccessful, but Tanner and her husband knew being in the middle of town and close to the college would be big selling points.

“It’s not on a busy street where you’re going to get a lot of high traffic, but we knew that it was just far enough off (the Boulevard) that people would come down to it if they really liked it,” Tanner said. “We knew the college kids would love a fun destination place like this.” 

Tanner said not only does the central location bring students to Swig, but it also draws in Dixie State College faculty and staff.

A lot of customers come to Swig after having a bad day, Tanner said. People stop by, get a drink and cookie, and get back in their zen zone.

“We didn’t want people to be treated like a number,” Tanner said. “We wanted them to feel special and make it a fun part of their day. We have regulars, and we know their drink the minute we see them. People love that.”

Tanner said she and her husband opened Swig in the height of the recession. People thought they were unwise to open any type of restaurant, but Tanner and her husband thought differently.

“…People will still want to come and get their fountain drinks,” Tanner said. “They’re not going to go out to dinner as much, but they will still come get $1 (or) $1.50 drink.”

By keeping menu-items reasonably priced, more customers are drawn to Swig.

Tanner said: “We want it to be affordable. It can still be a fun thing for [people], and it’s not costing a lot of money. We keep everything pretty low-cost.”

Swig has become an unexpected success not only for the Tanners, but also for customers.

“I assumed it would do OK, but I had no idea it would be the phenomenon that it is,” Borst said.

Tanner also emphasized her gratitude for Swig’s success.

“This is our one and only Swig, and the whole concept behind it was kind of fun,” Tanner said. “We didn’t know that it’d be anything like this. We are very lucky.”