Starbucks test products

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2 - 1 - New lunch menu chalk boardStarbucks wants you to swing by for lunch. In order to entice lunch-goers, Starbucks is testing out several new sandwiches in roughly 178 stores, between two cities. If you’re in Phoenix, Arizona, or Richmond, Virginia, you might find these new lunch options.

This Bloomberg news article does a thorough job of covering this lunch test, and lists new items and prices. It mentions that Starbucks hopes to launch new lunch sandwiches nationwide by 2015.

In late March, the test began in Phoenix and has been extended through the summer. Richmond starting testing these items in May. A StarbucksMelody reader sent me a few pictures of the lunch items. I was pretty touched that there was a beef brisket sandwich with my name on it just waiting for me to pick it up in Phoenix! I sure hope someone else got to enjoy it! ;)

2 - 1 - BBQ sandwich box

Notice that the lunch test includes a variety of sauces as options too – pesto and ketchup! The menu says they’re complimentary with “any warmed sandwich.” Now and then, I’ll see idea threads on MyStarbucksIdea.com request ketchup for breakfast sandwiches. This test gives Starbucks the chance to track ketchup use too (assuming that baristas are entering ketchup in the register every single time so that Starbucks can really track which sandwiches customers want to put ketchup on).

This lunch test includes the “Old-Fashioned Grilled Cheese” sandwich which has been a popular item, so I hear. The Old-Fashioned Grilled Cheese Sandwich is scheduled for national launch on June 24, 2014. It’s white cheddar, yellow cheddar, and mozzarella  on multi-grain toast.

Here are just a few more photos: What sounds good to you?

2 - 1 - Lunch menu grab-and-go food2 - 1 - Lunch test in Arizona food menu2 - 1 - Lunch test arizona pastry case shows off lunch sandwiches2

 

 

 

 

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2 - 1 - IMAG0782 Seaweed snack chips gluten free Chili Lime and Sea Salt chipsI discovered that Starbucks has a small snack food test going on. In hit and miss areas of California, you’ll find three pre-packaged snack food items, all of which are not available in Starbucks stores nationwide.

The three snack food items are all labeled gluten free. It appears to me that these are being tested to trying and provide some new options for customers following a gluten free diet.

The three items are as follows:

1) “That’s It.”  brand snack bars. There are two different flavors. One is apple – mango and the other is apple – blueberry. They appear to be small bars made by a California-based company specializing in fruit bars that are GMO free and gluten free. More information is at http://www.thatsitfruit.com.

2) Justin’s dark chocolate peanut butter cups. I’ve have been told that there is a milk chocolate version found in some Starbucks, but I have not seen those yet. The peanut butter cups are organic. For more information, here’s their website. http://justins.com/item/dark-chocolate-peanut-butter-cup-single/

3) Ocean’s Halo brand seaweed chips. There are two flavors available at Starbucks stores – Chili Lime and Sea Salt. I was digging through their website at http://www.oceanshalo.com and somewhere saw that two percent of their profits go to good-cause organizations involved in protecting the ocean.

If you’ve had the chance to try these snacks, let me know what you think! I always find these small tests pretty interesting and thought you’d like it too. Feel free to weigh in on anything related to these snacks or gluten free options at Starbucks.

IMAG0786 That's it snack bars 22 - 1 - IMAG0771 Justin's peanut butter cup

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Starbucks is Testing Coconut Milk.

by Melody on May 11, 2014

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IMAG0416 Sign Now Serving Coconut Milk 3 may 2014 PortlandStarbucks is currently testing Coconut Milk as an alternative milk option. Portland, Oregon customers and Cleveland, Ohio customers will likely find coconut milk available as an option for the beverages, whether hot or cold. The charge for coconut milk is the same as whatever your local soy upcharge is. (Prices can vary a little from region to region). For most people, this will mean a sixty cent upcharge to order a coconut milk beverage.

This is actually the second round of Starbucks testing coconut milk. About six months ago. Starbucks did a very small test of coconut milk in San Diego, California and Everett, Washington. The fact that the test has expanded to a larger area is very promising!

I had the chance to try the coconut milk at a Starbucks in Portland. I should make it clear, I don’t normally order (or drink) any non dairy milks, and don’t even find myself enticed by soy, almond, or coconut milk. I completely understand that lots of people want (or need) to drink a non-dairy milk, but I’m not in that group of customers. I wouldn’t order a coconut milk latte twice. It’s watery and it’s hard to foam to beautiful foam. For some reason, it comes out a lot more bubbly. Several partners in the Portland store I visited mentioned that the coconut milk has been very popular in Frappuccinos – I tried that too and liked it much better than in a latte.

The current coconut milk test is slated to end September 1, 2014.

If you enjoy reading about various Starbucks test beverages and products, click through this category here. Please keep in mind, Starbucks tests many more things than actually make it to a national launch.

IMAG0412 Side by Side Lattes Regular Milk and Coconut Milk 3 May 2014 Portland

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2 - 1 - Layered Frappuccino 2 copyStarbucks is testing something pretty unique: It’s a layered Frappuccino. The bottom layer is a semi-frozen fruit, such as pineapple, mango, or mixed berry, the middle layer is a fruity-mousse layer, and the last layer is a blended Coffee Frappuccino with Coconut Syrup blended in.  The whipped cream is citrus infused. This is a very small test in only a handful of stores in San Diego County. Still, it looks so intriguing that I want to shine a spotlight on it.

There are three test flavors of this new Frappuccino: The Maui Pineapple Paradise, the Copacobana Berry Breeze, and the South Beach Mango Passion.

The test began on April 29, 2014, and will run into the summer.

One thing about this beverage, right off the bat, it looks like it would be some work to construct. I certainly don’t know if that’s true or not, but since only the top one-third of the drink is blended, it looks like it might take more steps to put this Frappuccino together.

If you’ve tried this Frappuccino or have any thoughts on it, please weigh in.

Thank you to the reader who sent in these great images!

If you like reading about things Starbucks tests, there are many more of these kinds of articles here.

Edit on May 8, 2014: Following very strong interest via Facebook and emails, I’m including the address of the Starbucks location featured in this article: 635 Saturn Blvd., San Diego, California.

2 - 1 - Layered Frappuccino signage 29 April 2014 Chula Vista copy2 - 1 - Layered Frappuccino signage 29 April 2014 Chula Vista-2 copy2 - 1 - Layered Frappuccino3

 

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Single Origin Espresso Test at Starbucks. Try Colombia in your Latte!

March 24, 2014
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Starbucks is testing offering single-origin espresso for handcrafted espresso beverages. Customers who want an elevated espresso experience can order their espresso beverage with Colombia Nariño Supremo instead of the core Starbucks Espresso Roast. There are three areas of the country currently testing the single origin espresso: Portland, Oregon; Columbus, Ohio; and areas of Riverside county […]

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Cane Sugar Sweetened Starbucks Sweet Tea

March 9, 2014
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If you’re in a sun belt state, you might notice that as of March 4, 2014, you have Starbucks sweet tea available to you. Last fall, Starbucks tested their cane sugar sweetened Sweet Tea in a limited number of places, such as North Carolina. It’s now a regional product offered in numerous cities in warmer […]

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Which Lemon Loaf Do You Like Better at Starbucks?

January 10, 2014
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Starbucks is in the midst of an interesting test in some of their Phoenix and Tucson area stores.  Some stores are offering both the La Boulange loaf and the pre-La-Boulange version of the lemon loaf side by side.  As I understand it, this small lemon loaf test is to figure out which one has the […]

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Chestnut Praline Latte and Cherries Jubilee Mocha: Holiday Test Beverages at Starbucks

November 10, 2013
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Starbucks is testing out two new holiday beverages right now: the Chestnut Praline Latte and the Cherries Jubilee Mocha.  If your local Starbucks has one of those beverages, then it’s likely missing either the Gingerbread Latte or the Eggnog Latte.  These are just “test” beverages, meaning that they are not available nationwide! The Cherries Jubilee […]

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Coming Soon? New Breakfast Sandwiches at Starbucks.

October 26, 2013
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Starbucks is currently testing new breakfast sandwiches. Pascal Rigo, the founder of La Boulange and the lead food innovator at Starbucks, was recently quoted as saying, “[W]e could expect to see new breakfast sandwiches in our stores by April or May, 2014.“  So while often I talk about Starbucks tests as having a remote possibility […]

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The Evolution Fresh Veggie Burger: A small test.

October 16, 2013

Evolution Fresh (a wholly owned and operated subsidiary of Starbucks) is testing a veggie cheeseburger.  This item is available only at two of the Evolution Fresh stores.  As a reminder, Starbucks operates four juice bars under the Evolution Fresh brand: two are in Seattle; one is in Bellevue, Washington; and one is in San Francisco. […]

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