Chennai: Hot filter coffee may soon become the hallmark of US coffee chain Starbucks, if the claims of the company are anything to go by. Breaking ground in the kaapi land of southern India, Tata Starbucks Ltd opened its first retail outlet in Chennai.
However, with the city well-entrenched in the phenomenon of strong filter coffee brewed at homes in the morning, the coffee major is open to adding newer items to its menu to take on the stable morning cuppa of Tamilians.
Though Chennai is seen as the coffee capital, the market is much smaller than Delhi or Mumbai as majority of coffee consumption happens only at homes, said Avani Davda, CEO, Tata Starbucks Ltd, while opening their first Chennai outlet and 50th Indian store.
“As the idea is to go by customer convenience, if Chennai customers ask, we are also open to serving filter coffee at Starbucks,” she added. To add to rich coffee culture of the city, the company has introduced a unique pour-over set in Chennai, which uses exclusive Indian Estates blend infused with herbs and cocoa, she said.
“Our global chairman Howard Schultz firmed up Starbucks entry into the country not based on its retail infrastructure but after visiting the Tata coffee estates in Coorg and the humanitarian activities supported by the growers’ society,” Ms Davda said pointing to the growing awareness of the Indian arabica coffee variety.
She also pointed out that food accounted for one-fourth of sales in Starbucks outlets in the country and that the company would increase its presence in all major cities with next in Hyderabad....