Now Open: World’s Largest Starbucks

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Now Open: World’s Largest Starbucks

A view of the main coffee bar on the bustling first floor.

A view of the main coffee bar on the bustling first floor.

Alyssa Cassell

A view of the main coffee bar on the bustling first floor.

Alyssa Cassell

Alyssa Cassell

A view of the main coffee bar on the bustling first floor.

Alyssa Cassell, Writer

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The Starbucks Reserve Roastery Chicago is now the largest Starbucks store in the world, occupying five stories at the former Crate and Barrel building. The newly unveiled 35,000 square foot roastery has been bustling with its nearly 200 employees and many customers shuffling in to see what all the buzz is about. The Chicago roastery surpassed the size of Tokyo’s Starbucks Reserve location, the previous largest store, which is 32,000 square feet. The grand opening of the massive Magnificent Mile location resulted in over 10,000 people lined down the block on November 15, 2019, according to Starbucks News’ twitter.

Starbucks says the new roastery will offer “an immersive experience dedicated to roasting and brewing small-batch Starbucks Reserve coffee from around the world.”

Starbucks has over 30,000 locations in 80 countries on 6 continents, according to news outlet Sprudge. However, the Chicago roastery will be one of six of its kind, a Reserve Roastery. Starbucks Reserves offer the rarest, highest quality coffees that Starbucks brews. They also offer coffee experimentation experiences to develop new, unique roasts. The other Reserve Roasteries are found in Milan, New York, Seattle, Shanghai and Tokyo.

The Chicago roastery features various experiences on each of its floors. The first floor displays coffee grinding machines, a to-go coffee bean bar, pastries fresh out of the oven, and of course the main coffee bar. The second floor offers an experimental coffee bar, where you can create your own coffee brews. Throughout the three main coffee bars, seven different brewing methods are offered. On the third floor, more ovens and food are found. This floor offers pizzas and other foods cooked by Princi, the renowned bakery and cafe founded by Italian baker Rocco Princi. The fourth floor exhibits the Arriviamo cocktail bar, serving a wide variety of drinks, including signature Chicago drinks. Finally, the fifth floor is the seasonal rooftop terrace that presents a breathtaking view of the Magnificent Mile.

Alyssa Cassell
One of the many decorations on the first floor of the roastery is a “Chicago” mural made of the design graphics of many Starbucks coffee blends sold internationally.

The roastery also features comfortable seating, often near a window to look out at the bustling city while enjoying one of many products sold in the store. Gift shops can be found throughout the massive store, where customers can buy various rare or limited edition merchandise items, as well as coffee beans of the high quality roasts Starbucks creates.

“Visiting the enormous roastery was exciting and almost overwhelming, but I’m glad I made it out here. It’s definitely a must see,” said Noah Yates, a happy customer leaving the store with a coffee in one hand and a gift bag in the other.

While thousands of people have been lucky enough to visit the new roastery in the past few weeks, it is still on the bucket list of many coffee lovers, including Adams students, such as Milek Jaros. 

“It would be a dream come true to visit the store… but I probably wouldn’t leave for a while!” said the Adams junior.

The new Starbucks Reserve roastery is an experience that can’t be missed. Just don’t expect to be in and out of the captivating store in ten minutes!