This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Stocks Under $10 with 50-100% upside potential - 14 days FREE!

How a Starbucks With Beer and Wine Actually Works

PORTLAND, Ore. (TheStreet) -- When did Starbucks  (SBUX) become Ma and Pa Kettle's General Store and Wholesome Family Fun Center?

Despite the fact that TheStreet reported more than two years ago that Starbucks was looking to add beer, wine and other food options to its evening menus, a certain segment of the readership had a good ol' fashioned tantrum when Starbucks not only reiterated that plan, but announced its intention to continue it in thousands of other Starbucks locations.

"I don't want to be around drunks," some wailed. "Starbucks is going to turn into a bar," others argued. "Sure, now they're going to put it in the drive-ins" the less sensible among you posited. "Won't somebody please think of the children?"

Stop it. Just stop it right now. You sound like what would happen if the townspeople from Footloose met up with the townspeople from The Music Man at a book burning and decided to make sweet love down by the fire. More importantly, you just sound uninformed.

Starbucks didn't just start its evening beer, wine and food service yesterday. In fact, "Starbucks Evenings" have been going on in a number of U.S. cities for the better part of the last year. Pilot locations in Chicago, Los Angeles, Seattle, Atlanta and Washington, D.C.'s Dulles International Airport have been mellowing out at 4 p.m., changing over the menus and offering wine and beer to patrons of drinking age.

In short, they've been treating paying adults like adults.

But why just take Starbucks' word for it when we could go down and check it out ourselves? As it turned out, Starbucks Evenings has three pilot locations in Portland, Ore. -- including one outside the ground floor exit of the city's giant Powell's City Of Books in the city's Pearl District that's been serving alcohol since 2011. It's in a neighborhood of former warehouses, factories, auto shops and tool-and-die works that's now home to brewpubs, wine bars and farm-to-table restaurants.

My wife and I stopped into the Starbucks in question on several occasions when we lived along the streetcar line that runs right outside the Starbucks entrance. The coffee chain has been trying to put these locations in areas with high foot traffic and lots of public transportation, so having one adjacent to a streetcar, a block away from main bus routes on Burnside Avenue and about five blocks away from a light-rail line (and another Starbucks Evenings location on SW 11th and Alder) seems ideal.

At first glance, it seems like an average Starbucks. Folks in window seats and on couches still sip coffee and stare into their laptops, tablets and other devices. All of the same coffee drinks and baked goods available during the day are still available at night. The key difference is a few standing-room-only small, single-page menu with about seven food items and a wine list.

1 of 3

Select the service that is right for you!

COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
DOW 17,113.54 +61.81 0.36%
S&P 500 1,983.53 +9.90 0.50%
NASDAQ 4,456.0160 +31.3120 0.71%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from Bankrate.com

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto
Advertising Partners

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs