Inside The New Starbucks Reserve Bar in SoDo Seattle

Have you ever walked into a place and been like, “yeah, this place was made for me.” Maybe it’s Disneyland or the Lourve or a library or a mall.. for me, it’s Starbucks Reserve Bars.

The Starbucks Reserve® Bar is on the ground floor of Starbucks global headquarters, just south of downtown Seattle.

A Starbucks billboard across the street entice drivers to stop in with eloquent, succinct messaging (I can’t help but admire the copywriting) that reads:

Coffee as art

Food as theater

A few years ago, Starbucks opened their first Reserve Roastery on Capitol Hill. It’s my favorite spot to take tourists and friends—or to go on a date night.

The ambiance at Starbucks Reserve Bar is more chill bar than local Starbucks.

I’ve always loved spending hours at Starbucks stores. It’s been a place I’ve studied, gossiped, gone on first dates, had business meetings, killed countless hours inhaling the fumes of Starbucks coffee roast. The allure of Parisian cafe culture always enticed me. Yes, I want to spend hours talking philosophy and fashion over coffee.

Yet the new Starbucks Reserve in Sodo features none of the familiar Starbucks features you know from the coffee giant.

This is one of the first of about 30 Starbucks Reserve Coffee Bar megastores, which will be much larger than typical Starbucks, designed to offer small-batch roastings of “rare and exotic” Reserve coffees and encourage these bars to be more of a destination to hang out, instead of a quick stop.

The drink menu at Reserve Bars are vastly different than your neighborhood Starbucks. You’ll find Affogatos, Cold Brew Mocktails, a variety of Nitro Coffee spouts, a shakerato (espresso shaken with ice & a hint of demerara syrup), or an undertow (vanilla-bean syrup and cold half-and-half, with a shot of espresso floating on top). Grab a seat at the coffee bar and watch the amazingly scientific process of Siphon-brewed coffee.

There’s also a real adult mixology bar, with locally sourced liquor and expertly crafted cocktails. Starbucks once again flexes its creative beverage muscles with cocktail classics with their own twist.

Just steps beyond the bar, you’ll find the Princi bakery. Bakers dressed in white pull steaming trays of pizza and bread out of giant ovens. Pizza, pastries, salads, and cakes are ready for you to order.

Order your coffee and a snack, then find a seat in a giant comfy leather and stay for a while. They’ll even bring your drink to you.

Starbucks Reserve Sodo

2401 Utah Ave S, Seattle, WA 98134

Starbucks HQ Headquarters in SoDo Seattle

Starbucks Reserve in Seattle

What do you think of Starbucks venturing outside of their usual quick stop coffee and drive-thru destination?

Author: Becca Risa Luna

Seattle-based fashion writer and personal essayist. Likes designer handbags, glaring openness, and subtle vulgarity.

One thought

  1. I love them venturing out, having both slow down hang out service, what looks amazing, and having quick drive thrus is great. I am definitely trying this Starbucks next time I’m in Seattle. Starbucks is great, but I still love Petra in downtown Seattle, it’s my go to when I’m there. They have a Cafe and a Bistro as well. I didn’t even know I liked Mediterranean food until I went there.


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