Starbucks Has a New Way to Get More of Your Money

Starbucks Has a New Way to Get More of Your Money”

From the time the bakery opens at 7 a.m. until almost 11 p.m. when it closes, Princi's three Wenz deck ovens from Germany will radiate non-stop, ideally ensuring the Roastery's custom-roasted coffees are accompanied by warm, hearty loaves and tender, flaky cornetti (Italian croissants) whenever customers arrive.

Inside its Princi's first commercial kitchen, an 11,000-square-foot space adjacent to Starbucks headquarters, bakers make dough, chop vegetables and prepare ingredients, including some imported from Italy, for thrice-daily delivery to the Roastery less than four miles away, where cornetti (the Italian version of a croissant), pizza and bread made from owner Rocco Princi's recipes are baked in one of three huge pizza ovens. Salads, breakfast sandwiches, desserts, and a full bar serving Aperol spritz and more drinks completes the fancy upgrade. The menu will shift throughout the day.

"Rocco Princi (founder of Princi) is an artisan who, at an early age, discovered a love of bread making and through determination as well as an obsession for finding the flawless ingredients, has created an Italian food experience that I think is unparalleled", said Howard Schultz, executive chairman, Starbucks. But the average transaction in the Seattle Roastery - a tourist destination - is $20, compared with $5 at a traditional Starbucks, Mr. Schultz said.

For now, the Princi menu will only be available at the Roastery in Seattle. Rocco said he turned down a number of partnership offers from Italian coffee giants over the years because he anxious they'd force him to compromise his commitment to high-quality ingredients and hands-on practices.

The signature Princi sourdough loaf.

The company, he said, is spending "tens of millions of dollars" on the venture that it announced past year involving the Princi bakeries, though he declined to give more specific details.

Last July, Starbucks announced that it would become an investor in Princi, aiming to expand it far beyond its five locations in Milan and one in London, without actually acquiring the business outright. Standalone Princi bakeries are also on their way, with Starbucks teasing that the first will appear in either Seattle, New York City, or Chicago in 2018.

As these new Roastery locations open, Princi will be the exclusive food provider. has more details about the partnership between Princi and Starbucks.

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