The coolest new coffee shop in town may very well be … Starbucks?
That’s what the brand is hoping. CEO Howard Schultz announced today that Starbucks is planning to open 1,000 more of their upscale “Reserve” coffee bars by the end of next year.
This shift in their focus comes because Starbucks wants to compete with competitors like Blue Bottle and Think Coffee, which offer higher quality coffee for discerning hipster buyers. Starbucks is credited with waking Americans up to $4 coffee drinks, but somewhere along the line, these smaller coffee houses made it trendy to drink $6 coffees that come with a ten-minute backstory about the origin of the beans, a change known as the “third wave coffee movement.”
In order to dominate this new movement, Starbucks will be opening 1,000 new Reserve branches around the world, and a few have already opened in New York, a brand spokesman told Reuters. The brand signed a deal for a massive, 25,000-square-foot space at 860 Washington Street in the Meatpacking District.
The first Reserve coffee shop opened in Seattle in 2014 (Schultz called it “”magical coffee ride”), and sells $50 packs of coffee and drinks that can be prepared using fancy methods like siphon brewing.