Wake Up Seattle! Instant Starbucks Is Coming!

Starbucks VIA Ready Brew: Photo VIA USA TodayStarbucks VIA Ready Brew: Photo VIA USA TodayHuh? Oh, sorry... I was just talking to myself. Huh? Starbucks is going to market instant coffee in Seattle? The trendiest coffee town in the world? Oh, Chicago too... Well, that's alright then.

Sorry, I just can't believe the company that took America from Maxwell House to Komodo Dragon Blend® is regressing to instant coffee. And they've been working on ithis development for 20 years? Did Starbucks do any consumer research, I wonder? (Yes, apparently it did!)

The new instant coffee, Starbucks VIA Ready Brew, will begin selling in Starbucks stores in early March along with Target and Costco stores in the same cities. The packets will sell for $2.95 each and the 12-pack for $9.95.

CEO Howard Schultz is reportedly hoping to crack the international coffee market with the Starbucks VIA Ready Brew, as well as to make up for lackluster store performance in the Starbucks coffee houses during the last few years. Schultz deflected any criticism that "VIA" (far preferable to "INSTANT") might be an "off-brand" for Starbucks."

Starbucks developed a patented "micro grinding" process for its VIA, using the same beans as its brewed coffee, but broken down in a way that dissolves them instantly in hot water.

Taste testers were impressed, and maybe I will be too. But if they take away our local coffee shops, I, for one, will miss the experience. That's why I drink the coffee!

Get a free sample of VIA from Starbucks.com.


MarketWatch, USA Today