Evolution of Specialty Coffee Brings Rare Coffee to Market in Starbucks Exclusive Limited Reserve

With growing demand for specialty coffee, coffee lovers everywhere continue to seek the freshest and highest-quality flavors they can find. Now coffee enthusiasts can indulge in some of the best coffees the world has to offer with Starbucks® Limited Reserve, offered by Starbucks Coffee Company (NASDAQ: SBUX) and available where fine groceries are sold. These exclusive selections -- Mexico el Retiro, Tanzania Estate and Sumatra Lintong -- are made up of elegant and limited-time-only coffees from the Latin America, Africa/Arabia, and Asia/Pacific coffee growing regions.

As Starbucks coffee buyers travel the world, they often come across truly exceptional coffees that sometimes are too scarce to make widely available. The Starbucks® Limited Reserve line provides the chance to offer these exquisite and uncommon coffees from the world's best growing regions. Every few months, the company will put forward the next Starbucks® Limited Reserve line offerings as a way of continually celebrating the unusual characteristics and seasonal attributes that these coffees offer.

"These Limited Reserve coffees represent not only the noticeable taste differences from each coffee growing region but also true quality beans from the finest estates and farms, generating exceptional specialty coffee," said Anthony Carroll, manager, Starbucks Green Coffee Quality. "For example, since 2004, we have purchased every single bean that we were able to from the El Retiro estate. The coffee is that good. Now with the introduction of the exclusive Limited Reserve line, we have been able to package El Retiro as a single estate offering. The elegant, clean taste really demands that this coffee be enjoyed on its own."

The Limited Reserve coffees were chosen for the quality of the bean at the time of harvest as well as for their seasonal taste appeal after roasting. Scrumptiously rich and aromatic, Starbucks drew on deep knowledge and local expertise in coffee selection to source the perfect coffees to enjoy this time of year.

The three new Limited Reserve coffees for Winter/Spring are:
Tanzania Estate (Africa/Arabia). This coffee, from farms in both the north and south of Tanzania, has a medium acidity and dark spice notes. The coffee is a tremendous example of the hard work and dedication of the growers in Tanzania to isolate these flavors, which are often found in Rwandan coffees. The Africa/Arabia region produces a range of exotic flavors with a degree of variety far greater than even the vast geography it spans. Tanzania Estate is accented with notes of currant and mild citrus and is a perfect complement to an afternoon spent reading the Sunday paper while enjoying fresh-from-the-oven nutmeg, currant, and raisin cookies ? or Starbucks Chef Sue McCown's Pear Upside Down Gingerbread Cake.*

Sumatra Lintong (Asia/Pacific). Named for a town in southern Lake Toba, a volcanic crater lake on the island of Sumatra, this coffee from Indonesia has a mild acidity, a round syrupy body, fine spice quality and a distinctive herbal complexity. Sumatra Lintong pairs beautifully with sweet, aromatic cooking herbs like basil, oregano and herbs de Provence. Try a cup of Sumatra Lintong coffee after a warm winter meal of velvety-smooth corn and green pepper soup and herb roasted vegetables or with Starbucks Chef Adam Steinberg's Yukon Gold Potato Pancakes.*

Mexico el Retiro (Latin America). Grown in the Chiapas state of Mexico, bordered by the El Triunfo biosphere reserve, the El Retiro estate is at a crossroads of biodiversity. This coffee, which comes from the Bourbon varietals of coffee trees known for their exquisite flavor, boasts a bright acidity, soft round body, and a subtle floral and nutty finish. Mexico el Retiro is a great accompaniment to hazelnut toffee crunch, nutmeg cookies, and sweet cornbread ? or Chef Mark Graham's Cherry Clafoutis.*

Each 10 oz. bag sells for approximately $9.99 each and can be found in the U.S. where fine groceries are sold.

*Recipes available upon request.

About Starbucks Coffee Company
Since 1971, Starbucks Coffee Company has been committed to ethically sourcing and roasting the highest quality arabica coffee in the world. Today, with nearly 16,000 stores and more than 170,000 partners (employees) in 44 countries, Starbucks is the premiere roaster and retailer of specialty coffee in the world. Through our unwavering commitment to excellence and our guiding principles, we bring the unique Starbucks Experience to life for every customer through every cup. To share in the experience, please visit us in our stores or online at www.starbucks.com.

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