Starbuck’s vs. Peet’s . . . Settling the Argument Who is Best


“A Tale of Two Coffee Houses”

     Starbuck’s and Peet’s Coffee and Tea are two of the most prominent coffee house franchises in Menlo Park, California. Starbuck’s operates over four outlets in the Menalto Region and Peet’s also has four locations: one in Menlo Park off University and Santa Cruz, the shop in the Town and Country Shopping Center, along El Camino and Middle Avenue, and another in Palo Alto next to the Whole Foods Market.

     Which is better? Starbuck’s or Peet’s? The coffee shops were evaluated based upon three criteria: Quality products, customer service and expertise of staff, and community support and services.

     Markets and the quality of coffee products sold are similar. Each offers premium coffee bean blends and single beans. Each year, Peet’s and Starbuck’s make several special coffees around the holidays. Peet’s features a holiday blend and Starbuck’s has their Christmas Blend. Many customers of the area received either or both of these coffees as a holiday gift. Drinkers can still sample and brew their own Christmas Blend that is now available from the Live Oak Store and several other Starbuck’s outlets.

     Starbuck’s Live Oak Store is accessible via El Camino Real, next to the 22 and 390 bus lines, Roble Avenue, or Live Oak Avenue south of downtown Menlo Park. The Live Oak Store employees recently partnered with the Project Read-Menlo Park, an adult literacy program that has helped more than 1200 adult learners during the past decade. Store partners look forward to working with Project Read through coffee and food donations, as well as training to become volunteers in the program.

     Peet’s also practices and supports community service programs. One month, the shop in downtown Menlo Park distributed donations of over $2,500 to the American Red Cross International Relief Fund. All Peet’s stores received over $100,000 and their corporate office matched the first $25,000.

     Starbuck’s has a Coffee Master Program. Interested employee partners receive additional training in areas such as coffee buying, tasting, and home brewing. Amanda Dierdorf, a Starbuck’s Marketing Specialist states that, “Upon certification, each new coffee master is awarded a black apron and becomes the recognized authority for his or her store.”

     Coffee Master Deborah Parvel not only is highly qualified as a barista but also manages the Live Oak store. In just four years, Deborah has completed 15 passports and received the black apron last fall. Partners who wish to share their knowledge of coffee and have enthusiasm are encouraged to take part in the Coffee Master Program. Once enrolled, partners are required to taste coffees three times a day. New employees are given the Learning Journey Guide to complete in 30 days and a Coffee Passport that documents their training experiences.

     Both coffee houses strive to be good neighbors and active contributors in the communities where they live and work.

     Which coffee shops are better? It all depends upon one’s personal taste.

     Loyal Peet’s customers regularly return. Patrons surveyed state that Peet’s generally offers a cup of coffee that is more full-bodied and bold tasting. Frequent Starbuck’s customers are much the same way. They prefer a blend of coffee beans that are not too strong.


Copyright MMX – Max’s Scout Services & Communications, LLC


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Posted on December 9, 2010, in Food Glorious Food & Beverages. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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