Starbucks Plans New ‘Tasting Room’ and Express Stores

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Starbucks is about to get fancier — and even more widespread.

The coffee giant announced plans Friday to open a Starbucks Roastery and Tasting Room on its home turf in Seattle by December, a move it hopes will anchor a significant expansion of its business and “transform the future of coffee.”

“Everything we have created and learned about coffee has led us to this moment,” CEO Howard Schultz said in a statement.

The 15,000-square-foot facility — which will highlight what the company calls “coffee theater” — will be an “integrated coffee roasting, education and retail space” that will allow it to ramp up production capacity for its small-batch “Starbucks Reserve” coffee line. That, in turn, will boost its availability to 1,500 locations worldwide.

Starbucks plans to open at least 100 new stores to highlight those coffee options and also test out express stores that will offer fewer products in a bid to lower customer wait times.

So, fear not: Beverage innovation is here.

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