In 2015 Starbucks started rolling out boozy options at select stores in its Starbucks Evenings program. Participating shops added beer and wine as well as a full menu of small plates. So far, the after hours plan has worked well enough to get added to 450 Starbucks in the US and Canada. The success seems natural: People like Starbucks and people like beer and wine. But do they like them together? That’s the question raised in the newest offering at Evenings stores—the Espresso Cloud™ IPA. You know Starbucks is serious about its new drink because the company has already trademarked it.
A creation of barista Justin Burns-Beach who works in Starbucks’ research and development department, the new beer cocktail is simple: Starbucks espresso shaken with orange and mixed with an IPA (since the beers vary by region, the particular beer is different from store to store). Burns-Beach said that all he wanted in the beginning was the smooth foam he got from shaking the espresso to add to the beer and give it a coffee-tinged head. But he was pleasantly surprised when he poured the rest of the espresso shot into the pint glass as well.
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