Starbucks shut

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Starbucks is closing all of its 7,100 company-owned stores in the US at 5:30 local time tonight in order to train employees in the "Art of Espresso":

"Our unprecedented level of commitment to and investment in our people will provide them with the tools and resources they need to exceed the expectations of our customers," Howard Schultz, chairman, president and ceo said. "We believe that this is a bold demonstration of our commitment to our core and a reaffirmation of our coffee leadership."

The comprehensive educational curriculum for all U.S. store partners will provide a renewed focus on espresso standards that will help ensure the exceptional quality of every beverage. As a result, baristas will be better prepared to share their passion and knowledge with customers. Customers will be able to truly enjoy the art of espresso as Starbucks baristas demonstrate their passion to pull the perfect shot, steam milk to order, and customize their favorite beverage.

This unique in-store education event signals the company's focus on transforming the Starbucks Experience for both customers and partners. Starbucks hopes any customers inconvenienced by the early closures will see this as an investment that will have long term benefits. For their part, Starbucks partners will have an opportunity to connect and deepen their passion for coffee with the ultimate goal of transforming the customer experience.

There's no need for Tulsa coffee aficionados to be deprived of an excellent cup of coffee this evening. In fact, this is a great opportunity for habitual Starbucks customers to discover Tulsa's wealth of locally-owned coffee houses. Not only will you find great coffee, tasty food, and free Wi-Fi, you'll be keeping money in our community. Here are just a few, with my favorite two first on the list:

Coffee House on Cherry Street, 15th & Rockford (open 'til 11 pm)
Shades of Brown, 33rd & Peoria (open 'til midnight)
DoubleShot Coffee Company, 18th & Boston (open 'til 5 pm)
Kaffe Böna, 81st east of Memorial (open 'til 11 pm), 91st west of Yale (open 'til midnight)
Cafe de El Salvador, 5th west of Cheyenne in the Mayo Hotel (open 'til 6 pm)
Nordaggio's, Jenks Riverwalk, 81st & Lewis

Feel free to add your own recommendations in the comments. Once you try some of these local coffee houses, you'll never be satisfied with Starbucks again.

MORE: Although DoubleShot closes at 5 pm, there's a special event for the store's Coffee Illuminati tonight. Brian Franklin, the roastmaster general, will be talking about his recent trip to the coffee plantations of Guatemala. You have to be a member of the Coffee Illuminati to attend, but the good news is it only costs a dollar, and you can sign up online. (No dancing naked in front of a burning human effigy required.)

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Michelle said:

Don't forget Topeka downtown (Mayo)--not sure of the hours.

That's the unofficial name of Cafe de El Salvador, which is also where Topeca coffee (served there and at the Coffee House on Cherry Street) is roasted.

Bob said:

All Starbucks locations shut down for 3 hours will probably reduce U.S. First Quarter 2008 GDP by 1/2 of 1 percent.

You terrible, terrible tease ... reading your headline, I thought the indies had finally blown up the Death Star. 'Tis a consummation devoutly to be wished....

As for Tulsa coffeehouses, I'm fond of Gypsy. Reminds me of the places in Carbondale, Ill., where I used to hang out when I was about 17.

ak Author Profile Page said:

I've had really good cappuccinos or lattes at the Coffee House on Cherry Street, Shades of Brown, and DoubleShot Coffee Company, among the coffee shops listed in your blog. But you can find the best ones (i.e., strongest and tastiest) at the Cafe Cubana in Lincoln Plaza. Although I enjoy Starbucks' regular coffee, their premium drinks are weak and overpriced. (Maybe that's what their "time out" is intended to fix.)

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This page contains a single entry by Michael Bates published on February 26, 2008 8:23 AM.

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