Collaborators: Jim Beam
Brands, Deerfield, Ill., and Starbucks Coffee Co., Seattle
Beverage: Starbucks Coffee
Goal: To extend the
Starbucks brand into new, after-hours occasions
Jim Beam Brands and Starbucks Coffee Co. last month rolled Starbucks
Coffee Liqueur into nationwide distribution, following a successful test
market phase in Denver and Austin, Texas. The product, which will not be
available at Starbucks coffee houses but through bars, restaurants and
retail stores, extends the Starbucks brand to a new category of beverage,
and also expands category expectations for coffee liqueurs.
“Extending the usage occasion for Starbucks
coffee is not new for Starbucks,” says Aaron Brost, spokesman for Jim
Beam Brands. “In the past, the company has introduced
Starbucks-branded products such as Starbucks coffee ice cream, bottled
Frappuccino and Starbucks DoubleShot espresso drink. Creating a
Starbucks-branded coffee liqueur is an additional way to extend the
Starbucks experience into restaurants, bars and homes.”
According to the companies, Starbucks consumers are higher-than-average consumers of liqueurs. In fact, 50
percent of frequent Starbucks customers consume coffee liqueurs, according
to their research. Starbucks Liqueur, which has a target consumer of men
and women ages 25 to 54, was developed with a premium image in mind.
“The price point, branding and marketing of this product are directed
toward mature consumers who seek premium products,” says Brost.
To that end, packaging played an important part in the
product. The dark color of the glass was intended to convey a rich coffee
flavor, and the shape was inspired by a cocktail shaker to help communicate
the mixability of the product. It is available in three sizes —
50-ml., 750-ml. and 1.5-liters — and retails for an average price of
$22.99 per 750-ml. bottle.
The liqueur itself is
made from 100 percent Starbucks coffee, and was formulated to be highly
mixable, with the hope of expanding coffee liqueur into new usage
“Jim Beam is positioning the product beyond the
traditional cordial profile,” says Brost. “Rather than a
traditional ‘after-dinner’ liqueur, Starbucks Coffee Liqueur is
an ideal ingredient in a martini, tall drink or mixed drink.”
Beverage Industry’s October issue features a cover story on our 2019 Executive of the Year, Jim Koch of the Boston Beer Co. This issue also features a category focus on bottled water and the innovations that abound in flavored, functional and sparkling waters. The issue also includes an ingredient spotlight on the beloved chocolate ingredient as well as voice-picking solutions aimed at streamlining beverage warehouses. As usual, we rounded up the latest trends in products, packaging and ingredients.
Check back throughout the month for additional content.