Starbucks Coffee Company (Nasdaq: SBUX) has been voted as No. 1 Best Coffee in the Fast Food and Quick Refreshment categories and as the No. 1 Most Popular Quick Refreshment Chain in Zagat’s 2009 Survey of National Chain Restaurants released today. More than 6,100 surveyors participated in Zagat’s online survey.

Besides having the best coffee among all quick service chains in the list, including Dunkin’ Donuts, McDonald’s, Peet’s Coffee & Tea, and The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, Starbucks was voted as the Most Popular among the 28 chains included in the Quick Refreshment category.

“We’re honored that Zagat’s coffee drinkers have selected Starbucks as the best tasting coffee in our country,” said Cliff Burrows, president, Starbucks Coffee U.S. “We take pride in offering coffees from around the world that reflect both their unique characteristics and our commitment to seeking out the best beans, and we want to thank our customers, coffee buyers, roasters and baristas who all had a hand in making us the favorite coffee that we are today.”

Zagat conducts industry surveys all year round to identify the best restaurants in numerous categories, as selected by consumers. Zagat Survey is the world’s leading provider of consumer survey-based information and is considered one of the most trusted sources for information on where to eat, drink, stay and play. As with all Zagat surveys, participants in the Survey of National Chain Restaurants are everyday consumers who have a strong interest in the topics covered.

“Each year, our survey provides an insight into what real customers experience and enjoy,” said Tim Zagat, founder of the Zagat Survey. “As a leader in the coffee industry, this also affirms Starbucks as a customer favorite.”

In other categories, including overall experience and providing healthy options, Starbucks, ranked No. 8 and No. 9 respectively, acknowledges that it has room for improvement.

“We recognize that the Starbucks Experience must extend past providing a great cup of coffee,” Burrows continued. “We continually look for ways to improve the in-store experience for our customers, which includes a clean and comfortable setting, a perfectly made hand-crafted beverage, and delicious food options that are worthy of our coffee and made from quality ingredients. Stay tuned as we will have exciting news to share in the coming weeks about new healthier food options.”

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