Chris Mercer

Starbucks dabbles in alcohol

By: Chris Mercer - 20 October 2010 17:33

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Starbucks is to sell alcohol at a revamped store in its hometown of Seattle in the US and there is talk of going nation-wide if the trial pays off.

Starbucks said this week that it will sell wine and beer alongside an expanded food menu at its relaunched Olive Way store in Seattle.

The move marks a new venture for the coffee chain. Local paper The Examiner said that company executives were eyeing a US-wide strategy to sell alcoholic drinks at stores, in order to increase late afternoon customer volumes.

Starbucks said in a statement: "This is in response to our customers telling us that they want more options for relaxing in our stores in the afternoon and evenings and reflects what we’ve learned from our “learning lab” stores, 15th Avenue Coffee and Tea and Roy Street Coffee and Tea, also in Seattle.

"We hope to continue to learn from our experience at Olive Way and then consider bringing this concept to select stores in neighborhoods where it is relevant."

Starbucks has nearly 7,000 stores in the US. Definitely one to watch for the drinks industry, then.

Comments on this blog post

It seems that Starbucks realizes that after 3 pm their stores are empty and so to help off set the rent, they have come up with an idea. Not going to be as easy as they think, once they look into the legal angle, ie, getting a license to serve drinks. Some states require a certain % of food be served, other states will have a high price on the ticket. Good idea, but no way are they going to put it in all 7,000 stores. Also, most states require at least a person of legal age (21) to serve a drink.And what do they do when there is a Starbucks (at least in NYC) on almost every block?
As I said, great idea for a company that has a NAME...but putting into place ...tough.
Norman Weiner USA


Norman weiner said at 8:09 pm, October 20, 2010

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