I am addicted to Starbucks Coffee

Starbucks Coffee brings Venti and Grandes to coffee lovers world wide. Starbucks Blog for Starbucks Lovers. Starbucks customers love the Starbucks company is its coffee ice cream, social responsibility, starbucks card mystique, and new offerings such as the new Starbucks Liqueur. The seattle Starbucks coffee company invites its customers to its moblelocations, music, social ambiance, and a cup of the best coffee in the world.

Location: Oregon, United States

College Student and Small business owner.

New at At Starbucks!

Starbucks Coffee Company has unveiled new Black Apron Exclusives, Starbucks Liqueur, Moblie Hotspots, the new Starbucks Ichiro Starbucks Card and new music through Hear Music.

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Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Starbucks set to finalize India JVAdd to Clippings

NEW DELHI: Starbucks Coffee Company, the world's biggest coffee retailing chain, is close to naming a joint venture partner to stage an entry into the Indian market.

It has met six potential partners, including the Rahejas, the Kishore Biyani-promoted Pantaloon group and Planet Sports. A top-level team from the Seattle-based Starbucks Coffee Company was in India last week, to talk to potential joint venture partners, sources close to the deal said.

According to sources, the six Indian firms, which met the Starbucks team, have interests in either lifestyle retailing or real estate. Sources also said that the first Starbucks store is likely to be set up in Mumbai, within a time frame of six months. The search for real estate across the country had also begun.

Starbucks did not respond to an e-mail questionnaire from The Times of India. "Though Starbucks has been studying the Indian market for a couple of years, it is now close to firming up plans for India," sources said.

While Starbucks is awaiting the Government's nod on allowing foreign direct investment in the retail sector, sources said the coffee chain was now open to the licensee route as well. "India has huge potential in the food retailing sector. Starbucks is looking to tap that," the sources added.

Though Starbucks is expected to price its offerings at a premium, it will largely compete in the same space as other coffee retailing chains Barista and Cafe Coffee Day. Historically, Starbucks has banked on growth through both a mix of company-owned and franchisee stores.

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Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Coffee and music create a potent mix at Starbucks

Tuesday, July 19, 2005
By Steven Gray and Ethan Smith, The Wall Street Journal

When Concord Records Inc. President Glen Barros was deciding whether to sign an Italian pop singer named Zucchero to a U.S. record deal this spring, his deliberations included an unusual consideration: Would Starbucks Corp. help finance and distribute the singer's next CD?

More than once, Mr. Barros says, he has consulted Starbucks executives when pondering a musical act -- effectively giving them final say on whether to sign an artist. "If they'll be our partner," he says, "we'll do it."

Starbucks, already the world's largest chain of coffee shops, has emerged as an improbably potent force in the music business, able to resurrect moribund careers, enrage music retailers, and now -- the company hopes -- create new stars. As the music industry's sales suffer from digital piracy and competition from DVDs and videogames, Starbucks has found success selling carefully selected music to its millions of loyal customers.

After receiving a commitment that Starbucks would help Concord license the album, "Zucchero & Co.," from its Italian distributor, Mr. Barros signed the artist. The 14-song album, which pairs the singer with a lineup of stars including Eric Clapton and Luciano Pavarotti, went on sale at thousands of Starbucks locations and other retail outlets this month.

Mr. Barros knows how powerful a boost from the coffee chain can be. Last summer, his independent jazz label joined with Starbucks to produce and distribute "Genius Loves Company," a collection of duets between the late Ray Charles and performers such as Norah Jones. Helped by the biographical film, "Ray," and attention about his death, the record sold nearly three million copies -- about a quarter at Starbucks stores -- and in February won eight Grammys. No new Ray Charles release in decades had come close to that sales level.

That performance grabbed the attention of a music industry that has seen sales sink by 13 percent since 2000. Almost overnight, fierce competition emerged to supply one of a handful of CDs sold at any given time at Starbucks. The latest albums by Coldplay and Carole King are now in Starbucks. Two discs by Bob Dylan are due in stores next month.

Most of the CDs Starbucks sells hit its shops at the same time that they reach traditional music outlets. The chain also offers some exclusives, such as an album by New York rock band Antigone Rising. The CD, which Starbucks co-produced with Warner Music Group Corp.'s Lava Records, has sold more than 70,000 copies -- a remarkable start for an unknown group with little radio support and a limited touring schedule. Selections from the band get heavy play at the chain's stores. One record-label executive calls Starbucks "the new cute girl that everyone wants to take to the dance."

The push into music is part of Starbucks Chairman Howard Schultz's broader ambitions to make its stores the "third place" in consumers' lives, after home and the office. As Mr. Schultz, 51 years old, sees it, music and other forms of entertainment help draw customers and, in turn, drive up sales of Starbucks's pricey coffee and food.

Starbucks offers high-speed Internet access at some stores. Last year, the company also opened a sprawling combination coffeehouse and music store, called Hear Music Coffeehouse, in Santa Monica, Calif. Customers can shop for prepackaged CDs or burn their own on "media bars" using Starbucks's 200,000-plus song library. The company plans to open similar stores in Miami and San Antonio, later this year.

Starbucks plans eventually to install media bars in most of its traditional coffee shops as well. Already, at 45 coffee shops in Seattle and Austin, Texas, customers can pay to burn CDs. The company also says it has heard from movie studios and television networks about someday setting up online video downloads.

In music, the company has been careful to cultivate what its executives call "the Starbucks Sound" -- an aesthetic that's recognizable, if difficult for even those executives to articulate. Music sold at Starbucks tends to appeal to the chain's mostly adult customers, and generally reflects a sensibility similar to that of National Public Radio stations like Los Angeles' influential KCRW: moderately eclectic, often jazzy, and never noisy enough to disrupt a quiet cup of coffee.

Music has played especially well at the company because of the generally young, affluent, iPod-toting customers that lap up its lattes. Adding to the allure, the company has created a cachet for its music by choosing to sell only a few carefully selected CDs at a time. Even though record executives fight to have their wares displayed in front of Starbucks cash registers, many say they wouldn't want to see Starbucks add racks and racks of CDs. "We don't want them to become a place we can dump anything into," says Phil Quartararo, president of EMI Group PLC's EMI Music Marketing unit.

The risk for the company is that its music ambitions drain money that could be plowed more profitably into coffee and other beverages that made the chain such a success in the first place. A broader risk is that Starbucks is perfectly attuned to this particular generation of customers but won't adapt to changing tastes and styles over the years.

Starbucks itself seems to be wrestling with how far it can go in the music business without diluting its coffee roots. This month, it began installing in most of its North American stores four-sided, rotating racks that can hold up to 20 different CDs. Ken Lombard, president of Starbucks's entertainment division, insists, "The customer won't go into the store and feel like they've walked into a music store."

It isn't clear how much money, if any, Starbucks makes from music. The company declines to publicly disclose revenue from CD sales, but says it's growing steadily. Restaurant-industry analyst John Glass of CIBC World Markets in Boston estimates that music will account for less than 2 percent of Starbucks's U.S. retail sales of $4.5 billion during fiscal year 2005. So far, Wall Street has generally been warm to the company's musical ambitions, largely because they help draw customers beyond peak morning hours.

Starbucks's journey into music began in the late 1980s, when the chain barely had 100 stores. (Today it has about 9,500 locations world-wide, with about 6,900 in the U.S.) Mr. Schultz recalls visiting a Starbucks in Seattle's University Village section, where the manager, Timothy Jones, played his own music. "He'd put on a record and watch how people reacted," Mr. Schultz recalls. "He'd ask them about it. He was literally playing DJ." Mr. Schultz says he eventually took the manager's suggestion that Starbucks sell music in its stores. Today, Mr. Jones is a Starbucks music executive managing compilations and programming.

In the mid-1990s, Starbucks began selling CDs, such as a compilation of Blue Note Records' jazz artists. By 1999, at the onset of Starbucks's growth spurt, executives began telling Mr. Schultz about Hear Music, a chain of five U.S. music stores based in the San Francisco Bay area.

Hear Music was run by Don MacKinnon, a young music wonk who had spent hours in his Williams College dorm room mixing tapes of his favorite songs. When it started in 1990, the company published a catalog of CD compilations of the favorite songs of artists like Rickie Lee Jones and Bonnie Raitt. That didn't catch on, so Mr. MacKinnon and his partners opened stores to sell compilation CDs in San Francisco, Chicago and other cities.

In 1999, Mr. Schultz, curious, flew to San Francisco to visit the Hear Music store there. After walking into the store, he recalls, "My imagination was racing a mile a minute." He watched customers thumbing through the banks of carefully organized compilation CDs and decided they were rediscovering music in the same way people had rediscovered coffee at Starbucks. "The fact that Hear Music had elevated its status from a record store to an editor was compelling," he says. Later that year, Starbucks bought Hear Music for $8 million.

Starbucks named Mr. MacKinnon, now 37, vice president of its Hear Music unit. He and nine of his Hear Music colleagues moved to Starbucks's headquarters in Seattle, where they continued developing compilation CDs and negotiating projects like the Ray Charles "Genius Loves Company" release.

As that project neared fruition, Starbucks's music business was getting big enough that Mr. Schultz thought he needed a business person to run it. Enter Mr. Lombard. Before joining Starbucks as president of its newly created entertainment division in May 2004, the former investment banker had been president of a company owned by basketball star Earvin "Magic" Johnson. That company developed retail projects featuring Starbucks outlets in largely black and Latino communities.

Mr. Lombard, 50, says Mr. Schultz told him to expand and broaden the music venture. The primary focus was to shift from producing compilations to selling global acts such as Tina Turner and Beck. "This was a start-up in every sense of the word," Mr. Lombard says.

Mr. MacKinnon continued as Starbucks's musical guru, "talking to the labels, and making sure that there wasn't an opportunity out there that we'd miss," Mr. Lombard says. Mr. Lombard beefed up his entertainment staff, which since his arrival has tripled to about 60.

Today, the fan of the late rapper Notorious B.I.G. and the late singer Sam Cooke presides over meetings of the company's "editorial selection team," a group of nearly 20 executives responsible for sifting through mounds of CDs from aspiring artists.

Choosing the music isn't easy, partly because Starbucks's customer base is ever-widening, reflecting an increasingly young, multiethnic, transclass mix. Five years ago, about 3 percent of Starbucks customers were between the ages of 18 and 24, 16 percent were people of color, 78 percent had college degrees, and overall they had an average annual income of $81,000. Today, however, about 13 percent of the company's customers are between 18 and 24, 37 percent are people of color, 56 percent are college graduates, and they earn on average $55,000 a year.

Starbucks struck gold with relatively safe artists such as Norah Jones. But it has occasionally ventured beyond its traditional sound. The company sold about 38,000 copies of edgy rocker Beck's latest CD, "Guero," over a six-week period this spring.

When Starbucks carries an album, its stores often account for 20 percent to 30 percent of the record's weekly sales, and sometimes as much as 50 percent, Starbucks and music executives say. EMI Group's Mr. Quartararo says every time one of his company's releases has been sold at Starbucks, the coffee chain has been among the top four retailers selling it.

The highest sales percentages often are for CDs by relative unknowns who aren't selling many records overall. In some weeks, the chain was responsible for almost 50 percent of newcomer Amos Lee's total sales, but only 6 percent of the 1.5 million U.S. sales of Coldplay's new "X&Y."

Record companies like doing business with the chain because its stores don't return unsold merchandise, as traditional retailers do. Dealing with returns is costly and logistically cumbersome, and can make for unpredictable accounting, since revenue evaporates with each returned CD. Starbucks says it shifts unsold CDs to other stores or keeps them in a warehouse if it thinks they can be sold at a later date.

For that reason, as well as the scale of its operation, Starbucks often receives favorable wholesale pricing terms. In some cases, Starbucks pays the record company half the suggested retail price, which can mean the equivalent of $3 less than the wholesale price.

In a sales environment in which retailers from Amazon to Target routinely discount CDs, Starbucks often charges customers close to and in some instances more than the full retail price. For instance, Beck's "Guero" album carried a list price of $13.98, while Starbucks sold it for $15.95. But Starbucks customers, who spend an average of $4 per visit to the store on drinks and food, have proved themselves willing to pay full freight for a CD.

Earlier this year, some music retailers were incensed that Starbucks was given a six-week window beginning last month to exclusively sell the new acoustic version of Alanis Morissette's best-selling record, "Jagged Little Pill." In Ms. Morissette's native Canada, the country's largest music retailer, HMV Group PLC, pulled her other discs from store shelves in protest.

Humphrey Kadaner, president of HMV North America, says in an email interview that the action was "a means of conveying our sincere disappointment with Alanis's decision, given we at HMV had supported her well before she became a star. ..." Ms. Morissette says she looks forward to continuing a "mutually gratifying relationship with traditional retail outlets" and she'll "also continue to come up with other new and creative ways to share my music."

Tuned In

Starbucks has emerged as a growing force in the music industry. Some recent retail offerings:

ARTIST: Alanis Morissette
ALBUM: Jagged Little Pill Acoustic
ON SALE: June 13, 2005
TOTAL UNITS SOLD: 147,400(1)

ARTIST: Coldplay
ON SALE: June 7, 2005
TOTAL UNITS SOLD: 1.5 million

ARTIST: Dave Matthews Band
ALBUM: Stand Up
ON SALE: May 10, 2005

ARTIST: Ray Charles
ALBUM: Genius Loves Company
ON SALE: Sept. 1, 2004
(1) Non-Starbucks sales data not yet available
Sources: Starbucks; Nielsen SoundScan

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Monday, July 18, 2005

Starbucks Takes the Low-Profile Road to Renewable Energy

Starbucks committed recently to purchase wind power to offset a portion of the energy used in its operations, a move that places the company in the top 25 U.S. purchasers of renewable energy. But mitigating climate change, not garnering pro-environment publicity, is the main driver behind Starbucks' decision to buy renewable energy certificates. By Denis Du Bois

A global enterprise has committed to purchase wind power to offset a portion of the energy it uses. The $5.3 billion company is involved in agriculture, transportation, equipment sales, music distribution, and brand licensing, with locations in 36 countries worldwide. But this company is better known to most of us as the coffee shop on the corner -- Starbucks Coffee Company.

Starbucks' renewable energy purchase represents 5% of the kilowatt hours used in 6,376 company-owned stores in North America. The commitment puts the company in the EPA's top 25 U.S. purchasers of renewable energy.

Renewable Energy Certificates

Starbucks purchases wind power through renewable energy certificates, or RECs, also known as green tags.

RECs are created when a facility produces electricity from a renewable resource. With RECs, the "soft" benefits -- in particular, the avoided pollution -- are sold separately from the energy itself. So buyers of the certificates financially support the production of renewable energy, though don't necessarily use the energy produced. For example, Starbucks accrues the soft benefits of the wind energy they buy, but not the electricity, so they still must buy power.

RECs are not the only way to get renewable power. Some businesses install renewable energy equipment and capitalize on incentive programs; for others, the local utility might offer renewable power purchase options.

But Starbucks was faced with the challenge of purchasing green power for thousands of individual locations, many of which are leased. RECs provide Starbucks with a vehicle for buying wind power for its stores nationwide from one source.

"RECs provide an interesting model for us to get into the market without incurring huge transaction costs," says Ben Packard, Starbucks Director of Environmental Affairs. "Third-party certifications provide assurance that what you are buying is actually renewable."

RECs are traded, like stocks, through brokers. Starbucks selected 3 Phases Energy.

Why Buy Wind Power?

Starbucks has a strong ethic of environmental and social responsibility. With its dependence on agricultural production, Starbucks is especially concerned about the effects of global warming.

"The purchase of renewable energy is the cornerstone of addressing our own contribution to climate change," says Packard. "We have concerns about the long-term implications of climate change on our core business, which is coffee."

In an effort to better understand its own contribution to climate change, Starbucks took an inventory of its greenhouse gas emissions in 2004. An emissions inventory evaluates such factors as the energy used, its sources, and the emissions caused by generating it. The result is an emissions figure measured in metric tons of carbon and other types of pollutants. Starbucks engaged CH2M HILL for the inventory effort, and applied standards established by World Resource Institute.

Starbucks then committed to setting targets for reducing the emissions caused by energy consumption throughout the organization by October, 2005. Company-owned stores in North America represent about half of the company's total greenhouse gas emissions, with the remainder divided among transportation, roasting, and other operations. Thus, Starbucks stores were a strong place to start reducing the company's environmental footprint.

Buying renewable energy to offset 5% of a company's energy use might not seem like much, but in a company this size it makes a difference. Starbucks says the commitment is comparable to removing 3,200 cars from the road; the wind energy would power 2,500 homes.

When utilities offer voluntary green power purchase programs, the suggested amounts typically range from 5% to 10% of the customer's total consumption. Energy Priorities' publisher buys green power equivalent to 10% of its offices' energy needs from its utility, Puget Sound Energy.

Some companies use RECs to go beyond the limitations of their utilities' offerings. Alterra Coffee Roasters, for example, buys 100% green power for all of its retail locations in Milwaukee, Wisc.

Alterra actively promotes wind power and, along with its green power provider, works to expand awareness of green power in its stores and through presentations at local events. Outreach efforts offer another benefit of green power: building the stewardship attributes of Alterra's brand. Marketing value is often touted as a primary benefit of RECs.

Starbucks says its commitment to renewable energy was not a marketing decision. Starbucks has had a robust social responsibility program for many years. The company takes pride in a long list of environmental awards, and is included in two dozen socially responsible investment funds.

While Starbucks does not actively publicize its REC purchases, it quietly supports other organizations that are spreading the word about renewable energy -- an acknowledgement that Starbucks can't change the world alone. The company considers itself a leader in this arena, and thus feels a responsibility to share its practices and to support others who are increasing the awareness of climate change.

"We could take care of our entire climate footprint and still not mitigate the long-term risk of climate change to the company," Packard explains, referring again to the potential negative impact of global warming on coffee harvests.

Starbucks has joined the World Resources Institute's Green Power Market Development Group and the Climate Group. Starbucks has also announced a two-year commitment of cash and in-kind contributions to Global Green USA.

Getting Started with RECs

Starbucks has employees like Packard who are dedicated to staying informed about renewable energy and climate change. But for most companies, learning about climate change is the first step toward understanding the company's environmental impact and taking action.

Fortunately, there are many informative resources available. Packard suggests starting with these:

Climate Solutions
Green Power Market Development Group
EPA Climate Leaders
EPA Green Power Partnership
The Climate Group

The next step is to take action. Starbucks set targets for reducing its emissions and defined a renewable energy initiative to reach its targets. For assistance, some nonprofit organizations will consult with companies about buying renewable energy.

Getting top executives behind a renewable energy program is essential. Starbucks' management clearly has embraced the concept of environmental stewardship. Justifying the wind energy purchase was simple -- supporters explained to management that this action is consistent with the company's mission and values.

For executives who are not yet on board, Packard advises first conveying that energy is a financial resource that must be managed carefully. He admits that communicating the concept of climate change to the uninitiated is somewhat more problematic, but not impossible.

Aggressive action on the part of U.S. businesses is important, if the most serious effects of climate change are to be averted, says World Resources Institute president Jonathan Lash. "A successful climate future is simply not possible without immediate participation," he says. "Starbucks is to be congratulated for taking a leadership stance on climate change."

"It's not as difficult as it may seem to justify renewables," says Starbucks' Ben Packard. "Even small steps would make a significant difference."
Source Energy Priorities
URL: http://www.greenbiz.com/news/reviews_third.cfm?NewsID=28391

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Friday, May 13, 2005

New Starbucks Mint Frappuccino

Mint Mocha Chip Frappuccino blended coffee is an indulgent blend of rich Starbucks coffee, cool mint, chocolate, chocolate chips and ice, mixed with our creamy Frappuccino coffee base, and topped with sweet whipped cream and a mocha drizzle. The unique thin mint cookie flavor is something you’ve never tasted in a syrup before!

I had the chance to check out the new Starbucks Mint Frappuccino. At first I thought it tasted a lot like the peppermint drink froma few years ago. I thought the new mint drink is a little too strong, but also a little bland. I honestly, will be sticking with my favorite drink, the Double Blended Mocha Frappuccino.

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Sunday, May 01, 2005

The Perfect Gift

I was my birthday on april 29, I just turned 22, and guess what my presents consisted of! - A Starbucks Card.... If I were anyone else, this would not be a huge deal, but for me, this is probably the best gift ever! Lets sweeten the pot a little bit more by saying that it was a Starbucks card LOADED with $200! Now, if that's not an insane present, I don't know what is. Have a Hyper, starbucks filled Week! ....You can bet that I will....

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Wednesday, April 27, 2005

On Architecture: Starbucks puts a double shot of hometown flavor into every store

It's not about the French roast. Alec Whitney prepares a drink at Starbucks on 2344 Eastlake Ave., where an elegantly curved aluminum wing over the bar functions both as a dropped ceiling and sculptural intrusion.

Starbucks' globe-storming success is about place -- creating coffee bars that feel grounded in their neighborhoods, that lure people to hang out for a wide spectrum of reasons, and that somehow make us think "Starbucks" for refreshment or conversation instead of "Tully's" or "Ben & Jerry's."

The ubiquitous Frappuccino flogger readily acknowledges its debt to Ray Oldenburg's pathbreaking book "The Great Good Place." With increasing sophistication, it's backfilling the gaping hole in American city life that Oldenburg chronicled in 1989 -- the void of informal gathering places, or "third places," apart from home and work.

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Monday, April 25, 2005

A coffee master's ground rules for flavor

By Emily Shartin, Globe Staff
John Barry tastes coffee the way some people taste wine. He smells it, considers its body and acidity, and he can even recommend foods to pair it with. He can often tell in one sip whether a coffee has Latin American or Indonesian origins.

Barry, who is based in Newton, is a district manager and regional coffee and tea specialist for the java giant Starbucks Corp. He has been certified by the company as a ''coffee master," a process that typically takes 1-3 months, and he offers regular tasting seminars for staff and the public. (Full Story)

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Friday, April 22, 2005

Thousands of Starbucks partners (employees) and volunteers around the world celebrate Earth Day

Jim Donald, Starbucks president and ceo, left, shoveled rock with fellow partner (employee) Charles Toxey at a neighborhood Seattle park on Friday, April 22, 2005, as part of Starbucks nationwide celebration of Earth Day.

Thousands of Starbucks partners (employees) and volunteers around the world celebrate Earth Day with events during April and May as part of the Company's commitment to contribute positively to communities and the environment. Today, Jim Donald, Starbucks president and ceo, left, joined several partners to make improvements at a neighborhood Seattle park, an example of Starbucks taking an environmental leadership role in the communities in which it operates. (Photo: Business Wire)

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Thursday, April 21, 2005

Starbucks Brewing Hits

Coffee chain gets behind Antigone Rising

The long island all-female band Antigone Rising had just performed three songs for Starbucks executives at their record label's New York offices. The Starbucks team huddled briefly, then offered to release an Antigone Rising CD exclusively at the coffee chain, which serves 33 million customers a week. It was a huge break for a hard-rock band that has sold just 20,000 albums on its own. But before signing, singer Kristen Henderson had a question for the Starbucks execs. "I asked, If they were at a Starbucks, would they know how to go behind the counter and make the coffee themselves?" she says. "They said they would. That was reason enough. I liked these guys. It was really important to us that it was, like, a grass-roots mentality." (More on the Antigone Rising Story)

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Fraud charges for Starbucks employee

By Monica Soto Ouchi
A federal grand jury charged a Starbucks human-resources employee with giving her co-workers' personal information to others, who then used it to make $1.5 million in illegal bank withdrawals.
Seattle Times

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Hotline: You oughta know Alanis is coming

By Dean Johnson
Thursday, April 21, 2005

Alanis Morissette will embark on her first acoustic tour this summer in support of a newly recorded acoustic edition of her landmark 1995 debut album, ``Jagged Little Pill.'' She is scheduled to do a show at the Wang Theatre on June 17, though no ticket information for the Boston show has been released.
The tour will begin June 7 in Toronto, followed by the new album six days later. The set will be sold exclusively by Starbucks for the first six weeks.
``We'll play the album from start to finish,'' she told Billboard, ``although we'll probably play around some with the order. We'll also throw in some other songs from the last 10 years.'' Morissette said she is not saying goodbye to these songs: ``I'll be playing them until I'm dead.''

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Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Starbucks Is Out To Save Seconds In Serving Time-Pressed Patrons

A confessed Starbucks junkie, Steve Bush is a fixture at the coffee chain's Howard Avenue location, which has become a favorite haunt of the fit and fabulous of south Tampa.

In fact, the store has become such a hot spot for people- watching that Bush is writing a book that's set in a Starbucks: It's about a character who eavesdrops on customers' coffee shop conversations.

``Have you ever seen the line here?'' Bush said on Monday. ``At 7:30 or 8 o'clock [a.m.], the line will almost be to the door.``

But how long is too long to wait for a vanilla latte?
The question is a key one for the world's largest chain of coffee shops.

At Starbucks, it takes about three minutes on average from the time a customer gets in line until the order is delivered. That is down about 30 seconds since the company started measuring five years ago. However, waiting times in busy urban outlets at peak hours can be considerably longer than the average. Times for drink preparation range widely, from less than 20 seconds for a Tall black coffee to about 90 seconds for the Venti Double Chocolate Chip Frappuccino Blended Creme.
Read Full Story

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Monday, April 18, 2005

Starbucks Logo History | Siren history

The siren (sometimes referred to as a mermaid, but this figure has two tails) in the Starbucks' logo changed over the years due to political reasons. In the first version she had naked breasts. In the second, streamlined version, they were covered by hair, but the navel was still visible. In the current version, the navel is not visible anymore. You can see the change over the years, the long has become more "zoomed-in" and more streamline.

First Starbucks Logo

Second Logo

Current Logo

Although the old logo is not used on any products
except for reproductions of old mugs, etc, you can
still find the logo used on a few of the original

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Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Starbucks History - Pikes Place

Starbucks began in 1971 when three academics—English teacher Jerry Baldwin, history teacher Zev Siegel, and writer Gordon Bowker—opened a store called Starbucks Coffee, Tea, and Spice in the touristy Pikes Place Market in Seattle. The three partners shared a love of fine coffees and exotic teas and believed they could build a clientele in Seattle much like that which had already emerged in the San Francisco Bay area. Each invested $1,350 and borrowed another $5,000 from a bank to open the Pikes Place store. Baldwin, Siegel, and Bowker chose the name Starbucks in honor of Starbuck, the coffee-loving first mate in Herman Melville's Moby Dick(so company legend has it), and because they thought the name evoked the romance of the high seas and the seafaring tradition of the early coffee traders. The new company's logo, designed by an artist friend, was a two-tailed mermaid (Check back for a history of the Logo) encircled by the store's name.

First Starbucks, Pikes Place 1971

The inspiration for the Starbucks enterprise was a Dutch immigrant, Alfred Peet, who had begun importing fine arabica coffees into the United States during the 1950s. Peet viewed coffee as a fine winemaker views grapes, appraising it in terms of country of origin, estates, and harvests. Peet had opened a small store, Peet's Coffee and Tea, in Berkeley, California, in 1966 and had cultivated a loyal clientele. Peet's store specialized in importing fine coffees and teas, dark-roasting its own beans the European way to bring out their full flavor, and teaching customers how to grind the beans and make freshly brewed coffee at home. Baldwin, Siegel, and Bowker were well acquainted with Peet's expertise, having visited his store on numerous occasions and spent many hours listening to Peet expound on quality coffees and the importance of proper bean-roasting techniques. All three were devoted fans of Peet and his dark-roasted coffees, going so far as to order their personal coffee supplies by mail from Peet's.

The Pikes Place store featured modest, hand-built nautical fixtures. One wall was devoted to whole-bean coffees; another had shelves of coffee products. The store did not offer fresh-brewed coffee by the cup, but samples were sometimes available for tasting. Initially, Siegel was the only paid employee. He wore a grocer's apron, scooped out beans for customers, extolled the virtues of fine, dark-roasted coffees, and functioned as the partnership's retail expert. The other two partners kept their day jobs but came by at lunch or after work to help out. During the start-up period, Baldwin kept the books and developed a growing knowledge of coffee; Bowker served as the "magic, mystery, and romance man."1 The store was an immediate success, with sales exceeding expectations, partly because of a favorable article in the Seattle Times. In the early months, each of the founders traveled to Berkeley to learn more about coffee roasting from their mentor, Alfred Peet, who urged them to keep deepening their knowledge of coffees and teas. For most of the first year, Starbucks ordered its coffee beans from Peet's, but then the partners purchased a used roaster from Holland and set up roasting operations in a nearby ramshackle building. Baldwin and Bowker experimented with Alfred Peet's roasting procedures and came up with their own blends and flavors. A second Starbucks store was opened in 1972.

By the early 1980s, the company had four Starbucks stores in the Seattle area and could boast of having been profitable every year since opening its doors. But the roles and responsibilities of the cofounders underwent change. Zev Siegel experienced burnout and left the company to pursue other interests. Jerry Baldwin took over day-to-day management of the company and functioned as chief executive officer; Gordon Bowker remained involved as an owner but devoted most of his time to his advertising and design firm, a weekly newspaper he had founded, and a microbrewery he was launching (the Redhook Ale Brewery).
(Source http://www.mhhe.com/business/

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Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Starbucks Nerd

What a great idea...if you're a total nerd.
This guy brought his entire computer into starbucks, hooked up his internet and just started gaming away.

Do you see any coffee anywhere? - I don't.

Original story

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Sunday, April 10, 2005

New Starbucks Liqueur

I had the chance to try this Starbucks Liqueur out this last weekend, it was the best I've ever had! I have tried the Godiva Chocolate Liqueur and Starbucks wins - out right!

One of the best ways to down some of the new Starbucks Liqueur is to mix it with a starbucks frappuchino - the bottled kind that you can buy at the store. The new Liqueur only has about 20% alc, which isn't much at all. I would also suggest adding some half-and-half to the Liqueur and drinking them together. This acutally tastes pretty good.

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Starbucks Black Apron Exclusives

Coffee like none other As the name suggests, Black Apron Exclusives represents the best of the very best in a lineup of already outstanding coffees. Our tasters go to the ends of the earth, literally, in search of a bean whose profound flavors and unique characteristics earn them the highest honor we can bestow. And in a show of appreciation, participating farmers receive an additional cash award for their unrivaled contributions.

Since its introduction in April of this year, the Black Apron series has exceeded expectations both in flavor and in demand. The limited batches make these rare coffees ones to be treasured and enjoyed for as long as we can keep them around. Ask your barista about our latest Black Apron Exclusive coffee and learn about those we’ve already featured.

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Hear Music @ Starbucks : XM Satellite Radio Ch. 75

The coffeehouse sound, 24/7 Hear Music, the audio ingredient to your Starbucks experience is now on XM Satellite Radio.

Making great music synonymous with great coffee, Hear Music has been introducing us to countless new artists while paying tribute to the legends in Starbucks stores and on compilation CDs. Now you can access the Hear Music song library in living rooms, offices, car stereos and online, coast to coast and 100% commercial free on XM channel 75.

With over 2.5 million subscribers and more than 130 channels, XM Radio is the premier satellite radio service. Get XM Satellite radio or, if you’re already a subscriber, stop by channel 75 and dial in our special blend of daily inspiration. Find out more - at our partner Top Satellite Radio

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The Ichiro Starbucks Card

Starbucks, Major League Baseball & the Seattle Mariners have joined forces to create a unique and limited-edition Starbucks Card featuring Ichiro Suzuki that benefits seriously ill children.

This one-of-a-kind Card will be available through Starbucks.com and in stores in Washington, Oregon and Japan. It will be pre-loaded for $10. $2 from each sale will go to charities including the Starlight Starbright Children's Foundation in the U.S. and Make-A-Wish of Japan.

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Saturday, April 09, 2005


During my years frequenting Starbucks, I’ve observed ways to beat the system and get free drinks. This is dedicated to your poor schmos who cant afford an affordable luxury. I pay for my drinks but have “accidentally” stumbled on these field-tested rules.

Rule number 1: Go the busiest store near you to capitalize on worker confusion.

The key is to find a *$ that is busy, where confusion makes it easy to get away with things. If you go to an empty store where the person who rings you up is the same person who makes your drink, you aren’t getting away with anything.

Rule number 2: Make it seem like your order was incorrect.

If a barista screws up your order, they correct it and give you a coupon for a free drink the next time you come. Technically this isn’t completely free since you have to make that first purchase, but you can keep the chain alive and get free drinks forever.

Example: “Yeah, um, this is a caramel latte but I actually ordered a vanilla latte.” Of course you really did order a caramel latte but the person who took your order is busy (you’re at a busy *$ remember?) and forgot what you really ordered.

Rule number 3: Purchase something small and then act like a patient, confused customer waiting for his coffee beverage.

A bolder extension of rule number two is the real/fake purchase scam. You first need to order a baked good from the cash register person. After she gives it to you in a bag, mill around for about five minutes and then go to the barista and say, “Have you made a grande white mocha?” Look confused but gentle, like a puppy dog. They will look at their cups and see it was missing, and then promptly add yours to the queue.

Rule number 4: Wait by the bar like a snake and grab a drink that has been sitting there for more than 3 minutes.

At busy stores the inefficiencies in the system cause a lot of duplicate drinks to be made. The drinks sit on the bar for a while until the barista’s throw them away. All you gotta do is go up there and grab a drink. This scam has a couple downsides: the drinks will probably be lukewarm by the time you get it and like a person shopping for a home in a hot real estate market, you will never get your first choice. Most of the drinks are lattes with some wussy modification like a splash of soy milk.

Rule number 5: Greet barista’s by their name.

If you are a regular at a specific store, simply ask for the first names of the people that work there and introduce yourself. They will promptly forget your name but it doesn’t matter, for each time you go there and greet them by name you create a friendly vibe that encourages them to hook you up. It’s acceptable to be a little funny. To milk your connection indefinitely, it may be a good idea to tip them every now and then so they don’t think you are cheap. Little do they know that you are just broke because you have no skills that companies would pay for.

There are holes in every system and if you patient enough its easy to pick them apart with simple observation. I conclude with a disclaimer: don’t blame me if your stupid ass gets caught.
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