BBQ at Starbucks

Starbucks messes with Texas by introducing new barbecue brisket sandwich

Starbucks messes with Texas by introducing new BBQ brisket sandwich

Starbucks BBQ sandwich
Starbucks incorporates Texas signature into new sandwich. Photo courtesy of Starbucks

It's a good thing Texas doesn't get all cuckoo and territorial about little things like barbecue; otherwise there might be grounds for outrage over a new menu item at Starbucks. Continuing to expand its food program, the coffee chain has debuted an unprecedented sandwich on its summer menu, made with BBQ beef brisket.

The BBQ beef brisket sandwich comes on sourdough bread, with Jack cheese and onions braised in Gordon Biersch blonde bock beer. The sandwich, which is "reminiscent of an outdoor barbecue," is served warm.

 The sandwich, which is "reminiscent of an outdoor barbecue," is served warm. 

There's also a chicken sandwich on flatbread, and a new bistro box packed with omega-3. It contains smoked wild Alaskan salmon cream cheese spread, edamame hummus, omega-3-infused trail mix with dark chocolate chunks, wheat-free crackers and cucumbers.

Bistro boxes are like adult happy meals. A prosciutto and mozzarella pinwheel bistro box is available only on a test basis in Orlando and San Diego.

Citing a 2013 study showing that 50 percent of what Americans eat each day is snacks, Starbucks has added more than a dozen snacks, which it says are designed to be consumed day or night, for plane travel or road trips, for spontaneous picnics and after-work bites. Does that leave out any eating event opportunity?

"Since so many people are snacking these days, we decided to increase the number of snacks we offer in our stores, both sweet and savory," says Ellie Halevy, a Starbucks VP.

Several of these new snacks are seasonal, including taffy, chewing gum and a raspberry chocolate chip scone that replaces the cranberry orange scone, available through September. The snacks will be available in 3,400 stores in major metropolitan areas.

On the beverage front, Starbucks rolled out cold brew coffee, which has become a coffeehouse darling. Ground coffee is steeped in cool water for 20 hours, and it is served unsweetened to highlight its smooth, naturally sweet taste.

That's different from iced coffee, which is coffee that's brewed hot, then iced down, and often doctored with milk and sugar. And as long as we're going through this, an iced latte is espresso brewed hot, then mixed with ice and milk.