According to the New York times and as some have discovered, Starbucks the "wal-mart" of the coffee world has begun expanding their empire in some select cities to include a selection of brews and wines.
It may not have the "Starbucks" name but if you look at the fine banner print you sure can see its logo. Their location in Seattle which is up and running is named "Roy Street" and besides offering the regular Starbucks goodies, Roy street brings alcoholic drinks, up-scale bartistary (yes I invented a new world, sometimes you just have too) and lush decor.
The next state said to launch will be Nevada, with a few of these "boutique" stores popping up with drive through beverage service. Yes, thats right. "Can I get a poppyseed muffin and a Coors light to go please, I'm running late for work" It took a while to jump through the county hoops but it was no problem for a corporation of Starbuck's size.
I am interested to see how this operation works out. It will either be a much needed change if done right or a sorry attempt to improve a now aging brand.