Starbucks has opened its 30,000-square-foot Reserve-brand roastery in Shanghai, China, featuring three brew bars, theatrical coffee delivery systems, a mobile-based augmented reality experience and intricate design work throughout that pays homage to the company and its 18-year history in China.
Starbucks already has 600 stores in Shanghai — the most of any city in the world which the company has a presence — and the company says China continues to represent its fastest-growing coffee market. Yet the Reserve Roastery is quite unlike any of the existing 3,000 Starbucks stores throughout China, offering immersive coffee- and tea-focused experiences throughout multiple stories.
In 2012, Starbucks China has operated the China Starbucks Farmer Support Center in Pu’er in the Yunnan Province, supplying agronomists to work in concert with government representatives and local farmers to improve quality and production through the region. The Shanghai Reserve roastery will be the first Starbucks store globally to offer its Yunnan Reserve coffee, a yellow-honey-process coffee from Yunnan, while Reserve-line coffees from approximately 30 other origins will be available throughout the year.
Starbucks opened its first Reserve Roastery in its home city Seattle in 2014. At more than twice the size of the original Reserve facility, the Shanghai roastery will be followed by additional Starbucks Reserve roasteries in New York, Chicago, Tokyo and Milan.
“The affinity we have built with our partners (employees) and customers over the past 18 years in China is special and we knew we must bring the Reserve Roastery, our boldest, most premium store ever, to Shanghai, China’s bustling metropolitan hub and one of the world’s most dynamic retail destinations, as well as a gateway to customers from across Asia and the world,” Starbucks Coffee Company Executive Chairman Howard Schultz said in a company announcement of the Shanghai opening. “We’ve created a space that both recognizes and celebrates our 46-year history of coffee leadership and retail innovation with China’s rich, diverse culture.”
In connection with the opening, the Starbucks Foundation and Starbucks China announced plans to to make charitable donations totaling approximately $20 million over the next five years to programs and projects that contribute to, “meaningful and enduring social impact through poverty alleviation by creating opportunities for groups facing barriers, strengthening partner-driven and locally relevant community engagement, and improving lives of Yunnan coffee farmers and their families.”
Starbucks Shanghai Reserve Roastery is now open at 789 Nanjing Road W. in Shanghai, China.
Nick Brown is the editor of Daily Coffee News by Roast Magazine.
Just what we all imagined coffee would be like in China.