Introducing Starbucks Reserve™

What a fantastic week we’ve had here at Starbucks - a couple of great events and the launch of the brand new Starbucks Reserve™, a collection of exotic, rare & exquisite single origin wholebean coffees in very small quantities. Did you know we have been selling wholebean coffees since 1971 when we opened our first store in Pike Place Market, Seattle? And ever since then we have spent a lot of time travelling the world sourcing only the top 3% Arabica coffees. So what better way to celebrate our coffee heritage than by introducing these rare coffees on our 40th anniversary!

First things first, let’s talk about Starbucks Reserve™.  Over the last year we have noticed an increase in customers wanting a more unusual coffee experience. Coffees from single origins, or single estates served in their purest form and Starbucks Reserve™ gives us the perfect opportunity to showcase our coffee expertise. We have three amazing Starbucks Reserve™ coffees, each with a distinct story - El Salvador Pacamara Montecarlos Estate, grown around the mouth of a volcano, Fairtrade certified Nicaragua Corcasan, grown by a small cooperative of 250 farmers and Aged Sulawesi Kalosi, a five year old coffee grown in the gardens of farmers.  

On Wednesday we unveiled the brand new Starbucks Reserve™ area in the Conduit Street store, one of the 10 stores selling the limited edition collection.  Here we got the chance to showcase these fantastic coffees to customers, partners and invited media - basically talk about coffee all day (something that we at Starbucks love to do!)  The coffees take four minutes to brew, which is the perfect amount of time to chat to our customers about the story behind each of the coffees.

This was after a very exciting opportunity to blend good food and great coffee, utilising the expertise of both Starbucks and HIX.  Where better to showcase these coffees than to a select number of influencers than Mark’s Bar, right underneath HIX Soho in central London?  My fellow Coffee Masters and I brewed up the three types of Starbucks Reserve™ using the pour over method whilst the HIX team prepared a delicious brunch menu:

Aged Sulawesi Kalosi

complemented by – grilled field mushroom with poached quail egg and Peter Gotts bacon

Fairtrade Certified Nicaraguan Corcasan

complemented by – Hix favourite Heaven and Earth

El Salvador Montecarlos Estate Pacamara

complemented by – drop scones with prunes and vanilla yoghurt

Aged Sulawesi Kalosi

complemented by – Welsh rabbit fondue

My favourite course had to be the Welsh rabbit fondue with Aged Sulawesi Kalosi – the buttery notes in the coffee complemented those in the cheese perfectly!  What struck me the most about the whole event was the look on people’s faces as they tried the coffee.  You could tell that everyone enjoyed it and had their personal favourites.  Conversation flowed well into the night, helped by the coffee inspired cocktails created by award winning Mixologist Nick Strangeway.  

It’s great that we are able to offer this range of coffees to our customers.  I hope you enjoy the Starbucks Reserve™ experience and savour each of these unique coffees.

Laurence Winch, Starbucks UK and Ireland Coffee Ambassador. Twitter @StarbucksUKCA.