A desire to "celebrate connection" over a cup of java is driving the design for the newest Starbucks store, set to open on November 16 in New York City's iconic Empire State Building. The cafe will span three floors and 23,000 square feet, and will offer exclusive customer experiences such as flight tastings, immersive workshops, and coffee-inspired cocktails.
Though massive, the new store won't be the chain's largest. The Starbucks Reserve Roastery Chicago opened in November 2019, totaling 35,000 square feet across five floors. Other Reserve Roasteries are located in flagship cities including Seattle, Shanghai, Milan, and Tokyo.
The Starbucks Reserve Empire State Building will be the company's only cafe to offer Cold Pressed Espresso beverages, which are crafted using a patented brewing technology designed by the Starbucks Research and Development team. Using cold water and upward pressure, the method reportedly makes a softer, full-bodied, and sweeter espresso shot—similar to a slow-steeped cold brew.
The store will offer Starbucks Reserve signature beverages—such as the Hazelnut Bianco Latte, Whiskey Barrel Aged Cold Brew, and Nitro Almondmilk Mocha—as well as classic lattes, cappuccinos, and seasonal favorites including the Pumpkin Spice Latte and Peppermint Mocha. A menu of shareable plates and entrees will be available for all parts of the day, courtesy of Starbucks Reserve food purveyor, Princi.
As a nod to Starbucks' tradition of beginning meetings and gatherings with "a moment of connection over coffee," each guest will receive a complimentary Starbucks Reserve coffee tasting with their meal.
A full cocktail menu will feature classics and new coffee-inspired cocktails exclusive to the store. Plus, ticketed small group classes will provide hands-on learning for customers who want to learn how to craft the perfect beverage from Starbucks baristas and mixologists.
Starbucks has operated stores in the Empire State Building since 2008, and in New York City since 1994. “For almost three decades, we have grown alongside the city of New York, where people from around the world gather to connect, explore, and share ideas," Mark Ring, senior vice president of U.S. retail at Starbucks, said in a statement. "The Starbucks Reserve Empire State Building store will bring people together in this diverse and dynamic city over incredible coffee and food experiences that celebrate human connection, which is at the heart of the Starbucks Experience."
“It has been our privilege to partner with Starbucks on this fantastic space, which is an expression of their coffee culture and quality," Anthony Malkin, CEO at Empire State Realty Trust, said in a statement. "Tenants and visitors to the Empire State Building—recently named Tripadvisor’s number one attraction in the U.S.—will benefit from this amazing new store, as will everyone in the neighborhood.”
With more than 35,000 locations across the world, Starbucks recently announced plans to reach 55,000 stores by the end of 2030 as part of its "Reinvention Plan," which includes investing $450 million on new equipment.
Starbucks ranked No. 11 on QSR's 25 Fastest-Growing Fast-Food Chains in America this fall, with U.S. systemwide sales totaling $24.3 billion and average sales per unit of $1.2 million.