BuzzFeed has compiled a list of fascinating facts about Starbucks, the coffee chain beloved by yoga pants-clad basic girls across the U.S. Here are 10 (check out the full list at the link):
- Starbucks stores purposefully have round tables instead of square or rectangular ones to make solo customers look less lonely. "A round table is less formal, has no empty seats, and the lack of right-angle edges makes the person seated at the table feel less isolated," Arthur Rubinfeld, Starbucks' former senior vice president for real estate once wrote.
- Saxophonist Kenny G. is partially responsible for the Frappuccino. Kenny G. was an early investor in Starbucks, and suggested that they emulate the Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf's popular blended drinks to then-CEO Howard Schultz in the '90s. "Kenny has been a dear friend of Starbucks since the beginning of the company, and he did provide feedback on the creation of the beverage. We are very appreciative of everyone, including Kenny, who've been a part of the success of Frappuccino," a Starbucks spokesperson told TODAY.com of G's claim to fame.
- There is a phenomenon in real estate called the Frappuccino Effect. The Frappuccino Effect is the noticeable increase in home prices in an area after a Starbucks opens, aka gentrification. Since 1997, homes located near Starbucks have appreciated 96 percent, almost doubling their value.
- Starbucks is very, very particular about the smells in all of its stores. Coffee beans tend to absorb bad odors, former CEO Howard Schultz has said. That's why smoking was banned in all Starbucks in the late '80s, long before any other establishments did. That's also why baristas aren't supposed to wear perfume or cologne.
- There are secret Starbucks shops in Seattle, which are disguised to look like independent coffee shops. Roy Street Coffee & Tea in particular is where Starbucks often tests new recipes and products.
- The most expensive drink ever ordered cost $93.58. It's not on the menu, but if you really want to break the bank (and potentially die of a caffeine overdose), order a Pumpkin Spice Latte with 101 shots of espresso like Business Insider did.
- All stores are supposed to follow a "10-minute rule," for which they open 10 minutes before the posted opening time and stay open 10 minutes after closing. John Moore, a former corporate marketing manager for Starbucks, said, "This is just to provide good customer service, as there's almost always a customer waiting for a Starbucks to open." Whether or not stores actually follow this rule--or any of them--is a whole other story.
- Starbucks launched a failed "drinkable dessert" called Chantico in 2005. Chantico was similar to the thick, sweet hot chocolate found in European cafes, and was made with cocoa butter and steamed whole milk. A Starbucks rep told BuzzFeed that it was discontinued just a year after it was introduced.
- There are more than 87,000 possible drink combinations. According to Starbucks spokesperson Lisa Passe, "If you take all of our core beverages, multiply them by the modifiers and the customization options, you get more than 87,000 combinations."
- The original logo showed the mermaid's nipples. The "Starbucks Siren," as she's officially known, used to have very free nipples, in addition to a slightly suggestive open-tail pose. That design, which was based on an old Norse woodcut, was used from 1971 to 1987, but it still can be seen at the original Pike Place location.