Starbucks Cold Brew will be available in the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic and Midwest, at about a quarter of the company’s U.S. locations.
Starbucks, seeking new ways to get people into its cafes, will introduce cold brew coffee later this month at about a quarter of its U.S. locations.
Starbucks Cold Brew will be available at more than 2,800 cafes in the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic and Midwest starting March 31, the Seattle-based company said in a statement Thursday. The beverage was tested at locations in Boston and San Francisco.
Cold brew is the latest attempt by the world’s largest coffee shop chain to broaden its menu after more than four decades serving lattes and traditional coffee drinks. Starbucks is bringing beer and wine to more U.S. stores this year and expanding lunch offerings as it tries to double food sales to $4 billion by 2019. Specialty drinks helped Starbucks boost sales during the holiday season, and in January the company introduced the Flat White, made with steamed milk poured over espresso.
The announcement comes as the regions targeted for cold brew start to warm up after a frigid February, signaling that the iced-coffee season isn’t far off. Traditional iced coffee is made by brewing double-strength hot coffee and pouring it over ice, while cold brew is steeped in cool water for 20 hours, Starbucks said. Where drinks made with hot coffee have a “stronger, roastier” flavor, cold brew is smooth and rich, Starbucks said.
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“It’s very refreshing with chocolate and light citrus notes,” Michelle Sundquist, a member of the Starbucks research and development team, said in the statement, which was posted on the company’s website.
Starbucks, which has about 12,000 U.S. locations, didn’t immediately comment on the cost of rolling out cold brew.