Decatur Starbucks to sell alcohol?

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Summer O’Neill

Starbucks Coffee is one of the world’s most iconic symbols, and their stores are everywhere. Caffeine fanatics are used to going to Starbucks to grab a drink, kick back, and get some work done. And now, Decatur’s own Starbucks may have a new kind of drink for customers over 21 years old to choose from.

Starbucks announced late last month that they would begin to expand their business by introducing alcohol to their menus, beginning in southern California and Atlanta. According to a Decatur Starbuck’s employee (who asked to remain unnamed since she doesn’t speak for the company), the company’s intention is to start their customers off with their morning caffeine high and bring them down with an evening cocktail. She also said that the Decatur location is likely to add alcohol to their menu to accompany an upcoming re-model. The chain has the plan of broadening their customer base, but this has left some frequent Decatur customers questioning the move.

“I think it’s wrong. Starbucks is a kid-friendly coffee shop, not a bar. Selling alcohol there most likely will have me looking elsewhere, like Javamonkey,“ sophomore Kelsey Martin said. She and her friends frequently visit Starbucks, claiming that they go for for the atmosphere and welcoming nature of the local shop.

“I hope they open the bar part in the evening, so it wouldn’t affect me and my friends,” sophomore Emily Chanonhouse. Their concern is that the coffee shop will not offer enough welcome to teenagers if serving alcohol to adult customers.

Jessica Carr, one of Martin’s friends, agrees with her friends’ desire for Starbucks to remain the way it is, saying that it’s one of the only places that teenagers can hang out and not be asked to leave. But not everyone is against the change.

“I can see how adding alcohol isn’t out of the question for Starbucks,” sophomore Tiara Brown said. “Adding alcohol doesn’t really change my view on Starbucks because I feel like coffee is a bit mature, just like alcohol.” Brown’s opinion directly reflects that of the company’s, to move forward.

Starbucks’s teen customers have no reason to worry about the change. A Starbucks employee assured 3ten that the atmosphere will remain the same, and that the customer base will not drastically change, claiming that Starbucks has a reputation to maintain. The source said that alcohol will not be sold until after 2:00 p.m., and that no age limits will be placed on who can enter the shop. The employee also stated that Starbucks will still fit into Decatur, pointing out that Javamonkey sells alcohol as well.