Often times in when alchemy is thought of, we think medieval times with wizards and sorcerers. What if such things existed in modern days such as today? What if the focus of alchemy is common knowledge is can be used for favorite drinks? What if you have a soda machine that can create soda with special properties? The varieties is endless, though good taste is limited. What kind of concoctions can you create?
The accepted mode of getting otherwise unobtainable information is to go visit the cranky old hermit living in the mountains. It's just the sensible thing to do. So, naturally, everyone takes their monthly excursion to the hermit's hovel to consult him on everything, from lock-jaw to lovesickness, necromancers to nasal viruses.
Now, if everyone's always visiting the poor old hermit, there's going to be an enormous queue... "Wellcome to the Hermitt's Hovele, Please Take Ye a Number and Have Ye a Seate" reads the sign outside the packed dwelling.
Imagine the poor hermit, having retreated into the mountains to escape this precise situation...