Fun fact, Starbucks has been in Vancouver for 30 years as of 2017. And to celebrate this momentous occasion, Starbucks Canada has recently open it’s first Western Canada Reserve coffee bar on Main and 14th. Another fun fact, I was once a barista at Starbucks. I have to say that being a barista was one of my favourite jobs – I really enjoyed the other partners I met – some of them are still really good friends of mine. Besides the camaraderie, the training and the way that Starbucks treated me as an employee has yet to be beat. They put a lot of time and effort into training their partners and there were times at the end of the year, if the company did well, we all got bonuses. All the partners. It was such a great experience.
While Starbucks has had it’s fair of stumbles through the years, it’s great to see them focus on what they do best: coffee. The Starbucks Reserve store is a beautiful space with a warm colour palette. It’s spacious with comfortable seating and an L-shaped service area. At the store you’ll find small-lot Starbucks Reserve coffees that are handcrafted and made to order by specially trained Coffee Masters using techniques such as siphon, The Black Eagle, Clover brewer and ceramic pour-overs. You’ll also be able to find Nitro Brew here.
What I enjoyed the most about my experience here was the one on one conversation I had with my Coffee Master. He was very knowledgable about the coffee he was serving to me and the different processes and why siphon was his favourite way to prepare coffee.
This is the only store in Vancouver where you’ll be able to enjoy the siphon, Nitro Brew float and coffee affogato. I’d recommend getting the House affogato – they add cinnamon to the vanilla ice cream and coffee which is just delicious!
I selected the Malawi Sable Farms to go into my siphon, the coffee has a slightly tart but soft sweetness to it. What I like about the siphon method (amongst the other speciality ways to enjoy coffee) is that it really brings out the flavour of each and every coffee. The subtleties in coffee are hard to spot right away but as you grow accustomed to trying different flavours and regions, you’ll notice the differences. It’s almost like wine tasting in a way. The only way I enjoy and can respect different flavours of coffee is drinking it just by itself without any additives like sugar or cream.
One of the questions I had going into the Reserve store was whether they serve other items you can get at a regular Starbucks and yes, you can. There are pastries and a full coffee bar, so you’ll be able to order your favourites. There are also some different coffees you can’t find at a regular Starbucks and some mugs and traveller cups you can’t get anywhere else in the city if you’re into collecting!
Although I was jittery from the two coffees I ordered, I had to take a Nitro Brew to go. I love that they serve it in a reusable, plastic cup with the iconic labelling.
I’m glad to see a Starbucks Reserve store open up here in Vancouver, it’s definitely an experience that you should check out if you’re a fan of coffee!
For more information check out their website here: https://www.starbucks.ca/