[Homeroast] (resending )The Dreaded Starbucks

Kris McN krismcn at gmail.com
Mon Mar 8 01:16:58 CST 2010

Hey Ryan,

As well as what everyone's already said about the quality of their product,
I have a personal chip on my shoulder about Starbucks.  I grew up in Seattle
in the 70s, 80s, and 90s.  Seattle was a coffee town before Starbucks
hegemony, a small independent coffee house on most busy blocks.  When
Starbucks decided to take over the world, I watched as they would open up
one of their shops across the street or kitty corner to an established
independent.  Over and over.  Sometimes the independent could hold on, but
more often than not they  would end up closing.  Sure, some Seattle coffee
institutions, particularly around the university, outlived the onslaught.
This isn't based on any data or anything, but to this pissed off teenager,
it seemed like Starbucks nearly killed the independent Seattle coffee scene
for awhile.  I know what they did is probably good business, and maybe in
the long run it ended up just weeding out the crappy small purveyors,
eventually resulting in a stronger coffee scene, I don't know since I don't
live in Seattle any longer.  But it was gross and depressing then, and
whenever I pass a Starbucks today that would look, feel, and smell exactly
the same whether in Detroit, Seattle, or London, I mumble a curse.


Kris McN

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