Store review: Southlake, Texas & a test Frappuccino
As luck would have it, one day I woke up and found myself in Texas! (LOL). I wanted to share with you (all of you readers) my visit to a Starbucks in Southlake, Texas. This store is located in the “Towne Square” area of Southlake, and has something very unique and special – the “customizable” Frappuccino! And just to clear up any confusion, yes, it really is that bright and sunny in Texas in October. I definitely felt blinded by sunshine.
The “Custom Blended Frappuccino” is a Starbucks Frappuccino where the barista can customize it to the customer’s liking. Just to try something unique, I ordered a Soy Espresso Frappuccino:
With the customizable Frappuccino, a customer could order a decaf Frappuccino, or adjust the amount of sweetness, or have great milk customization too: 2%, whole milk (default), nonfat, and soy.
This limited test Frappuccino has been in testing phase for a long time; I would guess a full year. I first heard of it from mystarbucksidea.com because customers would post online that they did or did not like the Frappuccino. Their idea often would be something like “bring this everywhere” (or the opposite). Given the posts I’ve seen at various Starbucks related websites, I believe this Frappuccino started as a very limited and small test in Florida, and then moved to testing phase in Dallas, Texas area.
Though this picture makes it difficult to read the menu boards, one can see that in Southlake Texas, their Starbucks as a unique Frappuccino menu board:
I arrived at this Starbucks at about one in the afternoon, and in addition to ordering the Frappuccino, I got food and asked for Anniversary Blend coffee. I saw an urn marked “Anniversary Blend” and so I thought that must be what was on the brew for the bold pick. A barista, who I later learned is “Jeca” told me that after noon, the store only brews “Pike”. Props to Jeca for not calling it “Pike’s”. That is a pet peeve of mine. There is no “s”. I explained that I wanted something bold.
Jeca immediately offered to brew something, if I had the time to wait. I said sure, and after some discussion, we settled on Cafe Estima, because another barista found an open bag of it. “Brew on demand” appears to be alive and well in Southlake, Texas. Another round of props!
I got my food, plopped down in leather wall chair, and waited. This store has recently been remodeled and has an abundance of leather furniture, beautiful dark wood cabinetry, and has both a Mastrena espresso machine and a warming oven.
I had only a short visit to this Starbucks, but definitely enjoyed it! A barista brought my coffee out to my table. So I enjoyed my food, drank my coffee, and later made small talk with the barista working the bar. Here’s another interior pic of this store:
This store was clean and friendly, and I poked my head into the ladies’ room which was also clean and stocked.
Upshot: I would definitely recommend this store to a friend!
As to the unique customizable Frappuccino: It was definitely good and there is no doubt I would order them on a hot summer day in Seattle. I only have to wonder whether it is ever a good idea to change something as iconic as the Frappuccino. Millions of Starbucks customers know the Frappuccino for what it is now, and a change to any new Frappuccino would likely create a great stir. With millions of people each week walking through a Starbucks, a new Frappuccino will cause an uproar, both good and bad. Maybe this is why it’s been in testing phase for such a very long time. Personally, I liked it, but I’m not a hardcore Frappuccino drinker, and the Frappuccino for me is always an occasional treat and nothing more. It did have a lot of coffee flavor, and tasted great on a warm October day. Two thumbs up on the new Frappuccino.
(PS: If you want to read about another test beverage, click here for the review of the Honey Vanilla Vivanno which I really really really want Starbucks to launch nationally. Please please please Starbucks!)