Starbucks Introduces El Salvador Estate Pacamara Coffee

SEATTLE--()--Sept. 1, 2004--

  Starbucks Third Black Apron Exclusives(TM) Coffee is its First Single-Origin Offering from El Salvador and Second-Ever True Varietal Starbucks Coffee Company  



Some of Latin America's best coffees are grown at the base of volcanoes, where the soil and growing conditions are often ideal for coffee. Today, Starbucks Coffee Company (Nasdaq:SBUX) introduces a new coffee which takes that idea from the valley to the summit: Starbucks El Salvador Estate Pacamara, grown on the slopes of a volcano.

"El Salvador Estate Pacamara is an extraordinary coffee, grown on the Montecarlos Estate atop a volcano," explains Dub Hay, Starbucks senior vice president of Coffee. "The rich, fertile soil infuses this rare coffee -- the third coffee in our Black Apron Exclusives(TM) lineup -- with delicate floral notes and juicy, round flavors."

Thirty miles from the Pacific Ocean, high atop El Salvador's Volcan Montecarlos, Starbucks coffee buyers found an amazing coffee estate known as Montecarlos. Here, shielded by a quiltwork of natural wind guards, coffee trees grow up to the very edge of the volcano's crater. The high altitude and steep slopes create an ideal setting for El Salvador Estate Pacamara coffee, which gleans its distinct flavors from soil rich in minerals and volcanic ash. The Montecarlos Estate remains one of the few places in the world that produces rare Pacamara coffee.

"Pacamara" is a hybrid coffee variety combining the Paca and Maragogipe varieties. The Paca variety of coffee is a descendant of the Bourbon variety, a coffee found in Starbucks other true varietal: Brazil Ipanema Bourbon. All of the beans in Starbucks El Salvador Estate Pacamara come from unmixed Pacamara trees, and the resulting coffee beans are prized for their large size, intriguing flavors and great aroma. El Salvador Estate Pacamara is round and floral, with medium body and a juicy acidity.

"The conditions on the Montecarlos volcano are ideal for growing the highest quality coffee," continues Hay. "Abundant rainfall and fertile volcanic soil, rich in minerals and volcanic ash, bestow the coffee cherries with astonishing flavors. With one sip, our customers will understand why this rare coffee earned El Salvador's Cup of Excellence award, and why it's the perfect coffee to continue our exceptional Black Apron Exclusives(TM) lineup."

The Black Apron Exclusives(TM) line of coffee is named for Starbucks most knowledgeable buyers, roasters, tasters and Coffee Masters, who wear a black apron in the tasting rooms and in Starbucks coffeehouses. The first Black Apron Exclusives(TM) coffees were 100% Kona (introduced April 23, 2004) and Ethiopia Harrar (June 30, 2004).

Since Black Apron Exclusives(TM) coffees hail from very distinct and scarce crops -- making any prediction of availability nearly impossible -- subsequent introductions will be announced shortly before their arrival in select retail stores. Starbucks plans to introduce a new Black Apron Exclusives coffee approximately every two months. The next selection is expected to be available January 5, 2005.

Starbucks(R) El Salvador Estate Pacamara Coffee will be in Company-operated stores throughout North America on September 1, 2004 (1/2 lb price: US $12.00, CAN $16.00), and available while supplies last.

Starbucks(R) whole bean coffee assortment includes more than 20 single-origin offerings and blends from around the world, including many worldwide exclusive coffees, such as Bella Vista F.W. Tres Rios(R) Costa Rica, Brazil Ipanema Bourbon(TM), Colombia Narino (Supremo), and Panama La Florentina. Three coffee families help customers select their favorites: "Mild," "Smooth," and "Bold." The "Coffee of the Week" program links brewed coffee to whole bean coffee, providing customers with the opportunity to bring a daily taste home for the weekend. Starbucks Coffee Masters are available in all stores to answer coffee questions and help customers navigate the world of coffee.

Starbucks Corporation is the leading retailer, roaster and brand of specialty coffee in the world, with more than 8,000 retail locations in North America, Latin America, Europe, the Middle East and the Pacific Rim. The Company is committed to offering the highest quality coffee and the Starbucks Experience while conducting its business in ways that produce social, environmental and economic benefits for communities in which it does business. In addition to its retail operations, the Company produces and sells bottled Frappuccino(R) coffee drinks, Starbucks DoubleShot(TM) coffee drink, and a line of superpremium ice creams through its joint venture partnerships. The Company's brand portfolio provides a wide variety of consumer products. Tazo Tea's line of innovative premium teas and Hear Music's exceptional compact discs enhance the Starbucks Experience through best-of-class products.

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Contacts

Starbucks Coffee Company
Chris Gimbl, 206-318-8474
cgimbl@starbucks.com

Contacts

Starbucks Coffee Company
Chris Gimbl, 206-318-8474
cgimbl@starbucks.com