Since 2009, coffee giant Starbucks has been rolling out "stealth" Starbucks in various cities around the country which serve the Seattle-company's coffee in less branded, more "coffeeshop" like spaces. Now, it appears, New York City is about to get its first taste of the trend. And there is one good part: They will likely serve beer.
As Grub Street notes today, Starbucks is currently in the process of de-branding one of its five locations in the Herald Square Macy's. They sum up what you can expect pretty nicely:
The singe-location stores (sometimes called "stealth" or "mercantile Starbucks"), are usually named for the neighborhood in which they've opened, and all have same fine print posted on or near the front door and stamped on the takeout cups: "Inspired by Starbucks."
Inside, however, all rules are defenestrated: Pour-over and Chemex coffee may be served; there are no lucite-caged Vitamix blenders, nary a Frappuccino in sight. You can't buy the latest Putumayo sampler CD or the new Norah Jones at the counter, and the correct amount of milk is steamed to order for each cappuccino, never reheated. Pastries are sourced from local bakeries, not shipped from regional suppliers, and baristas are not required to follow a dress code, apparently.
Sounds not totally terrible! Still, if you can't stand having your coffee not clearly marked as coming from a giant corporation then you are in luck. That's exactly what the other four 'bucks locations in Macy's are for. Meanwhile, we're kind of loving the idea of going to a Starbucks in Macy's for a presumably overpriced after-work beer.