StarbucksCoffeeCompany

Confirming the prevailing notion that there is no such thing as too much coffee (what with over a dozen coffee outlets now on Oak Street), Starbucks Coffee Company opened its newest branch on April 14 at 224 Oak St., on the comer of Oak and View.

The displays of wedding portraits in the long-vacant storefront have been replaced by cappuccino-sipping customers, their free hands often filled with a pastry or some other treat.

Even though Starbucks now operates multiple numbers of stores in the USA and across the world “we didn’t start out as a huge corporation”, says Linda Cole, the manager of the local shop. She points out that Starbucks began as a small stand in Chestnut Ave Place 30 years ago. The Oak Street location is the chain’s seventh in Bonham.

The growth can be attributed in part to Starbucks’ emphasis on quality. “Our coffee beans are hand-selected by our own coffee buyers”, Cole says. “The beans are roasted in Greenville, vacuum-packed, and delivered in shipments to us at least once a week”.

“We use a full-city roast, which is one step below espresso. We also offer French, Italian, espresso, and seven custom varieties of roasted beans.”

To ensure freshness, Starbucks “cycles out” the unsold beans every seven days, by donating them to Project the Kind Heart, a cancer relief organization.

Starbucks also invests in the training of its staff. Each “barista” (Italian for “one who works the bar” spends 24 hours in training, acquiring retail skills and learning the many methods of brewing and preparing coffee).

The Oak Street shop carries a full line of coffee-related gifts and accessories, including a wide selection of coffee makers, mugs, and other items. Candies and chocolates, pastries from Just Desserts and the East Bay’s Full Bloom Bakery, and Starbucks’ private-label granola are also on sale.