Tucson Starbucks plans to add liquor to menu

Published: Jan. 4, 2016 at 12:38 AM MST|Updated: Mar. 2, 2018 at 4:11 PM MST
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TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - A popular coffee chain could soon be adding booze to its menu in Tucson. The Starbucks at Speedway and County Club is in the process of applying for a liquor license. 
A few years ago, select Starbucks locations across the country started selling liquor as part of their "evening menu."
"I think it's a good thing," Starbucks customer Jessica Massengill said.
Some customers say they are looking forward to the possibility of having a stiffer option to their double shot of espresso.
"I think they're trying to innovate, keep up with private and independent places," customer Josh Pielemeier said.
Starbucks first announced in 2010 that they would be experimenting with wine and craft beer to help boost business after 4 p.m. when it typically tends to slow down. One customer says it will definitely increase their sales, given their location down the street from the U of A campus.
"They have this really valuable real-estate sitting there in the evening doing absolutely nothing, which is kind of ridiculous," customer, Monica Huggett said.
But some say the decision may turn loyal customers away, concerned over the thought of the coffee shop turning into a bar.
"Downside is that Starbucks has never really been an alcohol type of place so it could change just based on the environment," customer Ben Strobeck said.
Tucson City Council member Steve Kozachik, represents Ward 6, which is the district the Starbucks is in. He believes the city council will unanimously vote to approve the liquor license on Tuesday, Jan. 5.
"It's new for Tucson and I'm glad to see it coming. They're a responsible business owner and they'll police it appropriately," Kozachik said.

If the city council does approve the application, it would then move to the State Liquor Board, which has the final say. If approved, the Starbucks
may add alcohol to the menu as early as this spring. This would be a restaurant liquor application which means you would have to drink all of the alcohol inside the store.

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