My thoughts on Starbucks


New member
Aug 26, 2006
A lot of people say Starbucks over roasts their coffee. I tend to agree, but the sheer convenience of it is amazing. Though once I was in chicago and I would just go to any small shop I encountered and it was a better experiance. However, I am in Lexington Kentucky right now and there is a Starbucks at the end of the block.. Then there is a mall, and the city is a few miles away. So starbucks is way more convenient than traveling downtown to a friendly neighborhood shop. So they get my business from that factor alone.
Starbucks is not about the coffee. It is a convenient trendy delivery system for fat and sugar. Go to their web site and look at their nutrition guide.

260 calories for a latte. 330 for a toffee nut latte. the pumpkins spice latte is 500 calories and that is not the top of the scale.

to put that in perspective, a hamburger at Mickey D's is 260 calories and a McChicken - including that mayonaise is 360. A quarter pounder with cheese is 510 calories.

So if they have you talking about the coffee at starbucks even to dis it, kudos to starbucks' marketers. Starbucks is about coffee is like a pair of jeans is about Christine Aguilera's butt. It has the shape, but it ain't what sells the posters.


New member
Feb 21, 2006
Statesboro, GA
SB does not allow their employees to speak to the press

we recently had one open on campus, the campus newspaper published that since they couldn't get any responses from employees

I'd rather have gas station coffee


New member
Apr 4, 2006
Austin, Tx

While I agree with everything said so far about Starbucks/Seattle's Best/Peet's(A&G) they have been as a whole very good for the industry...and if I could make that kind of loot selling coffee I would do it in a heartbeat.

Coffee requires a refined palate to enjoy on the level "we" describe it and many people don't have it/won't take the time to or can't develop it. It is pure snobbery to expect them to. I have learned to enjoy being an elitist in this fashion and while it would be nice for everyone to love good coffee as I do I don't expect it. I can't tell a $12 bottle of wine from a $200 bottle but that doesn't mean I should stop drinking it or that they should stop selling the cheap stuff. We all choose our own vices and to their credit some of the Starbucks junkies will, through starting with Starbucks, discover the vast world of truly good coffee.

Starbucks does not "drive out" mom and pop stores. Competition is key to our market system and if the smaller shops refuse to adapt and offer something different or better then they deserve to be run out by a more efficient company. If your shop relies on customers who don't really care what they get as long as it has a heavy dose of caffinee and sugar than you should expect to eventualy fail when a faster more recognised name comes to town. It is your responsibility as a shop owner to set yourself apart.

Yes all A&G companies take good coffee and burn the crap out of it, but it sells. You can't spite a company for giving its customers what they want.(though I do still get pissed about the whole misnaming of drinks and food by corp. america bit...caramel macc. my ass...and there is no such thing as a breakfast burrito unless you are going to deep fat fry your breakfast tacos)


New member
Jul 18, 2006
Winnipeg, MB
MMMM, 550 calories in my Breve latte. Usually though when I'm at Starbucks I order just steamed milk (breve again) with some whip.

In Canada we have the Second cup which users Arabica beans and seems to make the coffee a little hotter. If the second cup shop has a good franchisee it beats Starbucks any day.

Right now Starbucks is killing second cup. Part of it is marketing, but part of it comes down to the inconsistency in knowledge between second cup franchisees. When I order a breve latte in a second cup there is a 75% chance that the barista will have no clue what I'm ordering. This never happens at Starbucks.

When I go into a small shop I'd say that there is a 40% chance that the barista will have no clue what I'm ordering.

Starbucks has such a consistent experience that our Chain hungry public crave. I believe this makes them feel comfortable. Plus the baristas seem to always be flirty. That makes me blush.


New member
Oct 6, 2006
I am in the general Lexington, Ky. area. I would go to SB if there was no other place to go. So often I ended up at Barnes and Noble in town. But just today I found a nice place called Lexington Coffee and Tea. Nice to find it b/c SB is not my favorite by far.


New member
Sep 19, 2006
Re: SB

equus007 said:
Coffee requires a refined palate to enjoy on the level "we" describe it and many people don't have it/won't take the time to or can't develop it.

The problem here is they don't know because they are fed crap all day long. Yea you can't tell the difference between a 12$ bottle and a 200$ bottle of wine because it's cost prohibitive to learn. Coffee, however, is not. Just because they found an easy way to sell shitty coffee doesn't mean they should. For all the "good" they do for the community they should do some real good for the coffee culture and rethink how they deal with coffee. Reeducate the public as to what "good" coffee is. They have the staying power to drop all the crap that made them powerful and make a difference in coffee. Bring knowledge to the people about what makes a good cup of coffee. Why "acidity" isn't a bad thing in a cup. (Stupid "slight acidic taste" in some of their roasts are fake and it pisses me off. No light roasts? WTF SB!) Why we don't NEED to have a 20oz drink and why funny names aren't as funny as they sound. Make a real macchiato and get rid of that sugar hill crap that they sell.

Grrr... I was having a good vacation from work until I started ranting... sorry.

Ps. I work at starbucks (only because no other small coffee shops in town can affoard to have more than 2 or 3 baristas.. because Walmart.. err Starbucks is driving them out.)


New member
Oct 6, 2006
I would have to disagree about the cost. Sure $200 dollars for a bottle of wine is a lot, but if you add it up coffee can get costly for the normal person. If you stop at your local coffee shop (a good one and not speedway) and spend four bucks on a drink and then say you are a kind soul and tip the person behind the counter thats 5-6 bucks. By 7 and its $35 big ones. Now to me its worth it for good coffee, but if your like me $35 is not small amount either.

That could be an over the top. How many of you get coffee out compared to the times you process your own at home? I would say for me its about 50/50.


New member
Nov 1, 2006
Starbucks and the people who love them.

Whatever ones oppinion on Green Dot's products, marketing and

ambiance may be, this country's coffee aficionados and average

consumer alike owe them thanks. Twenty years ago John and Jane

American were perfectly content with fast-food-styrofoam-cup and super-

market-tin-can swill. Today, webpages such as this one are dedicated

to the enlightenment of the masses. Judging by the quantity and quality

of discourse on many of these pages it is safe to say that American's

expectations for coffee have been greatly elevated. Quality coffee and

tea was once the domain of those in the Beatnick-Artsy-Fartsy

persuasion and anyone outside of Seatle, Portland, San Fran., or the East

Village was simply not exposed to anything better. Now, thanks to

breakneck proliferation and savy market driven advertising, average

folks demand, and generaly get, coffee that is better than before. The

key to Starbucks success has been consitancy of the

product/experience. Starbucks represents a benchmark that rests well

above what people got and somewhere short of perfection. Just don'

expect consumers en mass to go looking for that next level on their

own. They wont'. Those who regularly read, browse and contribute to

sites like this one will.


New member
Nov 9, 2006
Well, here I am on my first day in this coffee forum. Seems interesting, and defintely educational, considering I would like to open my own shop in the near future. On the subject of the Starbucks thing, we all have our opinions of them, and that's a good thing. Personally, I occassionally get in the mood for starbucks myself, but not often. The biggest thing I have against Starbucks is the environment itself. When I think of a coffee shop I think of a place where friends gather to chat all night long about school or work, playing cards, or using the computer to dig around on the internet. Or even studying, or possibly just escaping for a little while. A social experience. It should be unique, and with franchise cofee shops, it just seems way to standardized. It's boring. I'd rather hang out with my friends at my house, then to sit in Starbucks. lol. Just my two cents. When I am fortunate enough to have my shop, I'd rather be near a college campus, and have the art students there be the interior decorators. Make the shop itself a work of art. You'll never have that at a Starbucks. DAMN THE MAN! lol!


New member
Dec 3, 2006
Jacksonville, Fl
Starbucks, to me, is the "mall" coffee. When I go shopping with my wife, I buy some because its all thats there. Fortunately, in our area, we have Panera's Bread, which makes a much better cup of a variety of coffee's and has the "chat with friends" ambiance to boot. Not to mention, a great selection of pastries.


New member
Dec 13, 2006
I have visited Starbucks about 10 times or less.

Everytime, I ordered Espresso.

Everytime, it was put ordered "for here"

EVerytime, it was too bitter

Everytime, it was not hot enough, the ceramic cup was too cold and sucked all the heat...

I've been to lots of family owned coffee shops that put out better espresso more than 75% of the time.

The moral of the story is, Becuase starsucks is the #1 customer by number of pounds of coffee beans in the world, does not mean that they are in any way the best.

Similarly, McDonalds became the number one mover for pounds of food in the world in the 60's or 70's. More than all the grocery stores combined. Do they have the best hamburgers?


New member
May 19, 2006
Well I make no secret of the fact that I'm in love with Javaberry for its rich and pure taste so as you can guess I think that Starbucks is a poor coffee shadow. The commercial abilities of its sellers don't make it good coffee or simply coffee.


New member
May 8, 2006
MrBox said:
SB does not allow their employees to speak to the press

we recently had one open on campus, the campus newspaper published that since they couldn't get any responses from employees

I'd rather have gas station coffee

Almost every company has that policy. If the starbucks employees didn't speak to the press that's more of a nod to how satisfied they are with their jobs than anything.

Yes Starbucks does burn it's beans, but there's a good reason for that. They deal with millions and millions of pounds of coffee on a regular basis. As anyone in the industry could tell you the flavor profile changes from different farms, different seasons, different weather patterns. One of starbucks biggest sticking points is keeping a consistent flavor. By burning the beans they are making up for the differences and normalizing the profile.

It certainly doesn't make for the best cup of coffee, but it does work quiet well for the largest commercial coffee retailer in the world.