Ringing in at 43,000 square feet, the Chicago Reserve Roastery dwarfs other Roastery locations around the world, including Tokyo, which previously held the title.

By Bridget Hallinan
September 09, 2019
Courtesy of Starbucks

Starbucks is breaking its own record once more. Last week, the coffee chain announced more details about the “world’s largest Starbucks” opening in Chicago, reports CNN—at 43,000 square feet, the new Reserve Roastery will dwarf the Tokyo location, which previous held the title for occupying 32,000 square feet. (Shanghai, too, was once touted as the world’s largest, and rang in at 30,000 square feet.) According to the Starbucks team, the brand has roots in Chicago dating back almost 32 years, when the first Starbucks store outside the Pacific Northwest opened in the city in October 1987. Now, the massive Roastery is scheduled to open in the Magnificent Mile neighborhood on November 15 at 10 am, in a space previously occupied by Crate & Barrel.

There aren’t many details available about the new location yet; however, we do know that there will be specialty Reserve coffee, tea, and “mixology beverages” that are inspired by Chicago and as such, exclusive to the Chicago Roastery. (The Tokyo location debuted exclusive beverages as well when it opened this spring, including the Teavana Cream Soda Matcha, Golden-sky Black Tea Latte, and barrel-aged cold brew made with coffee beans aged in a whiskey barrel.) According to the Chicago Tribune, Annie Beebe-Tron of Fat Rice, Julia Momose of Oriole and Kumiko, and Rachel Miller of Community Tavern will create specialty cocktails for the location—guests can also expect an outpost of Princi, the Starbucks-backed Italian bakery concept. Overall, the store has been described as “an immersive experience dedicated to roasting and brewing small-batch Starbucks Reserve coffee from around the world.” When it opens this fall, the Chicago Roastery joins a roster of five other Reserve locations in Milan, New York, Seattle, Shanghai, and Tokyo.

Starbucks also made headlines last month for introducing a new fall beverage—Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew—that hit the menu at the same time as its ultra-popular seasonal favorite, the Pumpkin Spice Latte. (Said latte returned to Starbucks on August 27, 2019, its earliest launch date ever.) The new cold brew is the perfect transition between summer and fall, made with “Starbucks Cold Brew, vanilla, and finished with a pumpkin cream cold foam and a dusting of pumpkin spice topping”—plus, the signature pumpkin spice syrup, which now has real pumpkin in it. We tried it out before it launched, and found it to be creamy, smooth, and less sweet than the typical PSL—if you’re interested, you can find them at your local Starbucks now.

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