“We knew if we were opening a bar in this neighborhood, it had to be among the best, and this is truly a statement,” Muller added. “I want to have my party there.”
The mixology feature is just a sole aspect of one of Starbucks’ most ambitious designs to date. Located in New York City’s meatpacking districting, it marks the fourth Starbucks Roastery and second in the U.S., joining the Seattle venue. The others are in Shanghai and Milan, with future openings slated for Tokyo and Chicago in 2019.
“We designed the Roastery as the pinnacle experience around all-things-coffee, and there is nothing else like it in the world. With premium coffees, teas, mixology and the iconic Milanese Princi Bakery, it serves as a Starbucks brand amplifier and a platform for future innovation,” said Kevin Johnson, Starbucks CEO, in a statement. “Beverages such as Draft Nitro, Cold Foam and the recent launch of Juniper Latte all began at the Roastery and have since been introduced to Starbucks locations around the world. It is the ultimate Starbucks Experience and an unforgettable way to connect with our customers.”
Howard Schultz, Starbucks’ former leader who now serves as chairman emeritus after departing the board of directors in June, opened the first Big Apple Starbucks on Broadway and 87th Street in 1994. Now, there are 350 Starbucks across the five boroughs and about 5,000 employees. The Reserve itself employs close to 300 people, including roasters, baristas, commessas, and mixologists.
Like other Reserve locations, the New York City spot showcases small-batch roasting of single-origin coffees and blends called Starbucks Reserve, brewed by “Starbucks Master Roasters.” Starbucks ships these coffees to Reserve stores nationwide as well as serving them in-store.
Also akin to fellow Reserve venues, the location is designed to reflect its community. It’s housed on the street level of a new nine-story office building. “New York is a hub to the world,” Muller said. “It’s an unbelievable place with such history. The meatpacking district has a fantastic history of industry, and the neighborhood has an electric energy; it is alive. We’ve designed a space where the excitement and dynamic activity of the neighborhood is mirrored in the Roastery. We want our customers to come in and feel very inspired.”
Some design features include a ceiling featuring an “undulating ocean” of squares and rectangles inspired by the building’s exterior and by the grid of New York City blocks outside. The ceiling also features a network of twisting, subway-like “symphony pipes” through the freshly roasted beans travel (making the tinkling sound of rain along the way) to silos at the main bar, or the take-home scoop bar.