Starbucks evening is here
When I first heard about Starbucks Evenings, I immediately thought about “Playboy After Dark,” an old show hosted by Hugh Hefner. It’s a damn sexy name that I wouldn’t normally associate with the behemoth coffee retailer. It seems Howard Schultz and his army of caffeine peddlers have their marketing game down pat. The company’s foray into the world of “adult” beverages will — like everything else Starbucks touches — most likely be a resounding success.
Starbucks Evenings, which has already been up and running for some time in Atlanta, Chicago, Los Angeles, Portland, Seattle and Washington D.C., is set to expand to thousands of more stores. The evening alcohol service (beer and wine), combined with light evening meals (somewhat akin to Spanish tapas), are going to put an entirely new spin on how people view their local franchise coffee joint.
Now, thanks to clever marketing and evening booze, not only will Starbucks continue to be your “neighborhood spot” where you can kick back during the day, it will also become your after-work hangout as well.
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As I think about the human need for companionship and warm surroundings in relation to some of our addictive tendencies, I’ve come to appreciate the genius of Starbucks once again. If you love caffeine and sugar, the green mermaid has got you covered. Now you can add a glass of lager or wine (after 4 p.m.) to the list. With savory and sweet food, plus caffeinated and alcohol-infused beverages readily available, Starbucks seems to offer it all.
In fact, when I take into account the comfy sofas and chairs, the mellow music filtering through the air, along with the WiFi access and the wooden tables where I can get some work done — not to mention Starbucks’s progressive and oh-so-friendly business ethos — why would I ever want to leave?
I can eat breakfast, lunch and dinner there, feed my caffeine and sugar addictions, and then chill out on a sofa (as long as I’ve properly marked my territory) for the rest of the day. If the stress of whatever I’m doing on my laptop goes to my head, I can unwind in the evening with some tasty libations and light snacks. Man, talk about the luring power of food and drink.
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As soon as Starbucks lets me bring my pillow and sleeping bag inside, and the baristas stop telling me I can’t set up a personal “sleeping nook,” I’m all in. If I’m going to caffeinate myself all day long while getting jacked up on sugar at the same time, and then drink myself into oblivion in the evening, I’m going to have to sleep my buzz off eventually. They can call it “Starbucks All Night ® .” Just remember to shut off the lights and lock the doors after the staff closes up the shop. I’ll see you all in the morning for breakfast and my morning cup of java.