10 Weird facts that will change the way you see Starbucks
Starbucks is arguably the most popular coffeehouse in the world. But when most people enter a Starbucks to pick up their daily cup of joe, they probably aren't thinking about anything other than their own order. There are so many things you may have never known about Starbucks that could change the way you think of the place.
If we forget about plastic straws and implicit bias for just a moment, let's look at 10 things you never knew about the coffee chain.
1. A Venti drink allegedly has the same amount of espresso as a Grande
If you order a venti whenever you're feeling extra exhausted and really need a boost, you're doing it wrong. It seems logical to assume that a larger cup would hold more caffeine than a smaller cup, but that's actually not true. According to an anonymous former Starbucks employee, both Grande and Venti espresso drinks contain two shots of espresso, at least in the location that they worked at. This is only true for hot drinks, as venti iced espresso drinks have three shots while grande iced drinks have two.
2. Coffee masters wear black aprons
The employee said black aprons are reserved for "coffee masters". Starbucks baristas have to become certified coffee masters in order to wear black aprons. Once they're approved by a manager, they have to learn basically everything there is to know about coffee before they can officially call themselves a coffee master. So, if you have a question about something specific, look for a barista in a black apron.
3. Starbucks has its own record label
Starbucks is often known for the music they always have playing in the background of each store. As it turns out, Starbucks is more serious about music than you may have thought. The company actually has its own record label called Hear Music. It was created with Concord Music Group in 2007, and actually includes some pretty huge performers, like Paul McCartney, James Taylor, and Joni Mitchell.
4. There's a reason for the round tables in the restaurants
Go into any Starbucks, and you'll probably see two kinds of tables: round tables and rectangular tables. There's a reason for the roundtables. According to Reader's Digest, the roundtables are supposed to make you feel more at home when you're by yourself.
5. Starbucks has secret shops
Starbucks actually has a few secret shops, according to The Seattle Times. One is known as Roy Street Coffee & Tea in Seattle and they sell things that aren't on typical Starbucks menus. This includes things like wine, beer, and gourmet cheeses that can't be mass produced. They sometimes use the secret shops to test out new products as well.
6. They have a 10-minute rule they have to follow
If you really want a drink from Starbucks and noticed they closed five minutes ago, you're in luck: they are allegedly still obligated to serve you. According to one employee, there is a rule where they have to open the store 10 minutes before the posted opening time and leave the doors unlocked for 10 minutes after the posted closing time.
7. There are more than 87,000 drink combinations possible
Chances are good that you've heard of the Starbucks "secret menu," which is basically a huge list of drink combinations that aren't on the menu. Going through all of those options would take a very long time because as Starbucks spokesperson Lisa Passe told The Wall Street Journal: "If you take all of our core beverages, multiply them by the modifiers and the customization options, you get more than 87,000 combinations."
8. Starbucks spends more on health care for employees than coffee beans every year
As you may have heard, Starbucks offers a generous benefits package to their employees, including providing healthcare to employees who work 20 hours a week or more. In fact, according to Howard Schultz, CEO of the company in 2008, Starbucks spends $300 million annually on healthcare, which is more than what they spend on coffee beans.
9. They've been sued for underfilling lattes
In 2016, two people from Northern California filed a class-action lawsuit after suggesting that Starbucks has a system that means lattes are 25 percent smaller than the menu claims. The company maintains that this is not true and in January, the lawsuit was dismissed, according to Reuters.
10. They donate old food
In 2016, Starbucks announced a plan to donate 100 percent of its leftover food to feed the hungry. The plan was going to affect all 7,000 US locations. They partnered with Feeding America to donate unsold meals, like sandwiches and salads, and it was all due to their baristas speaking up.
Being around for nearly 50 years, there were bound to be things you didn't know about this mammoth coffee chain. I know what I'm having for lunch at least.