Parting shot

September 12, 2007 at 3:28 pm | In WS miscellaneous | 30 Comments

We mentioned last month that Starbucks is taking over the Infinity Espresso spot at the northwestern corner of Jefferson Square, but hadn’t heard when Infinity would be closing. Now we know, per this e-mail:

CLOSING TOMORROW AFTER 10 YEARS!!!! the new building owners didn’t
renew our lease and they kicked us out and let starbucks in!!!!! We are selling
everything so people are welcome to come in and make an offer!

The Infinity folks say they’ll be open 8-6 tomorrow. Friday and Saturday, people will be at the store, but they’ll just be packing up and moving out, so if you want to “come in and make an offer,” tomorrow’s the day.

30 Comments

  1. Uh….what? Am I imagining it…or isnt’ there already a Starbucks in Jefferson Square in the Safeway?

    With all of the “good” coffee in the junction (Drive Through, Sugar to a Tea, HotWire, Uptown, Diva, Cupcake Royal, etc) why in the world do we need another Starbucks…especially one 30 yards from an existing one?

    Comment by David — 4:10 pm September 12, 2007 #

  2. because starbuck’s motto went from “one on every corner” to “one every 30 yards away” :)

    Comment by dq — 4:28 pm September 12, 2007 #

  3. The WS “crown” in the SBUX saturation situation currently belongs to Westwood Village, where there is a Starbucks in the QFC, a “standalone” Starbucks about five doors down, and a Starbucks-serving cafe in the Barnes and Noble. We suspect we’ll see a Starbucks in at least one of the megaprojects on Alaska, too – they seem to be simply planting their stake, pre-construction, with this one in JSq.

    Comment by WSB — 5:17 pm September 12, 2007 #

  4. That is a shame. I have never been there but it’s a shame that the owners would throw out a good coffee shop for Starbucks.

    Comment by Bonnie — 5:50 pm September 12, 2007 #

  5. and…there’s the one on Admiral way at 41st, and one in Safeway a block away….which is run by Safeway employees, who a lot of the time haven’t got a clue what they’re doing. Quality? Get your latte at Met Market or Freshy’s on Calif Ave.

    Comment by Jan — 5:53 pm September 12, 2007 #

  6. Everyone loves to hate the big guy, but Starbucks wouldn’t be as big as they are if they weren’t doing something right. I go there all the time for the reasons most people do. Sue me. I go to indy coffee houses sometimes too. Depends on what I want. What i’ve seen is that indy or small doesn’t mean good all the time either.

    Comment by Cy — 7:10 pm September 12, 2007 #

  7. Cy: I’m totally with you. Hotwire for one is among the weakest coffee experiences I’ve had in Seattle. I just don’t understand what the big deal is with that place.

    Comment by Aidan Hadley — 9:57 pm September 12, 2007 #

  8. We should start another running poll – best coffee places in WS.

    I’ll offer the following –
    Best coffee coffee
    Alki Bakery
    Sugar to a Tea
    Nouveau Bakery (French press)
    Ladro
    Bird on a Wire

    Best cappuccino
    Bird on a Wire
    Alki Bakery
    Original Bakery
    Ladro

    Best double-shot on ice
    Cafe Rozella
    Bird on a Wire

    Best mocha
    Ladro
    Bird on a Wire
    Alki Mail & Dispatch

    Best view (can include scenery or city scapes)
    Alki Bakery
    Original Bakery
    Cafe Rozella
    C&P Coffee
    Ladro
    (my all time fav, though, is Cafe Fiore on 85th in Loyal Heights)

    By the way, the Bird is now open every day to 6 pm. Good Luck Heidi – I know i’ll be there in the late afternoons.

    Comment by chas redmond — 11:34 pm September 12, 2007 #

  9. The service at Hotwire is SLOW. I love Diva on Fauntleroy for great coffee although the parking leaves something to be desired.
    The reason Starbucks is so successful is the same reason McDonald’s is when you go into a Starbucks/McD’s the world over it is the same….comforting….turning us into complacent zombie consumers one cup/burger at a time.
    (…..and I know I rag on Starbucks alot – I have a lot of friends who work for corporate and if Starbucks does one thing right they DO treat their employees like gold. So at least there is that. :) )

    Comment by Jen V. — 6:40 am September 13, 2007 #

  10. I would go to C&P more, but for some reason they constantly give me my coffee in a glass. I’ve even said something when I’ve seen mugs sitting there and they just put it in a to go container. I know it seems petty, but there’s just something about drinking coffee out of a mug. I keep trying to remember to bring my own, but I always forget.

    Comment by NATINSTL — 10:07 am September 13, 2007 #

  11. I really like the espresso at Thriftway; it has such a rich taste! Plus, I can grab a Zatz bagel at the same time. Ladro and Uptown are great too. I’ve always heard good things about Hotwire so it’s nice to see other opinions. That’s what I love about this blog- the comments from everyone!

    As for Starbucks taking over every corner, there must be a demand for it or it wouldn’t work. It’s like Dunkin Donuts on the east coast; they are everywhere! Now if only we could get a DD in Seattle…

    Comment by m — 10:43 am September 13, 2007 #

  12. “The reason Starbucks is so successful is the same reason McDonald’s is when you go into a Starbucks/McD’s the world over it is the same….comforting….turning us into complacent zombie consumers one cup/burger at a time.”….There is some truth to this, but turning in to a “complacent zombie” is a choice. I patronize Sbux sometimes when in a rush, but prefer my Espresso Vivace Vita roast from my own little machine. I don’t understand the animosity towards sbux. They provide good jobs and decent bennies….which is more than many small businesses provide to their employees (for various reasons).

    Comment by Bill — 11:10 am September 13, 2007 #

  13. My wife and I both love the coffee at Hotwire and never had an issue with slow service. The glass thing at C&P NATINSTL mentioned also bothers me. There’s nothing better than coffee in a good old china mug (especially with their coffee in it)..
    We once witnessed a rather bizarre incident at Alki Bakery. A guy ordered a strawberry and chocolate smoothie. We saw them make 2 strawberry drinks (same blender) and put them on counter for pickup. When the guy walked up and asked which one is the chocolate smoothie they pointed at one of the 2 drinks and told him with a straight face (after short hesitation) “This one”. They guy was so puzzled that he just took the 2 strawberry smoothies and walked away…

    Comment by Andre — 11:18 am September 13, 2007 #

  14. Like the true Seattle coffee snob, where I go depends on what I’m in the mood for.

    Uptown has great americanos, very strong.

    Diva and Bubbles on Alki have great hot mochas. Bubbles just opened a second shop on Delridge, so they must be doing something right.

    Starbucks is good for iced mochas. And of course, they have a very consistant customer experience.

    Sometimes the smaller shops can really have a long wait if there is only one employee doing both the drink making and register…

    Comment by SJ — 11:53 am September 13, 2007 #

  15. Ugh, be thankful you don’t have a dunkin donuts infestation here like there is on the East Coast!! I’ll take an SBUX over the Dunk any day. Their coffee is disgusting, the shops have NO atmosphere, and its often the ONLY option in town. Really its only good for greasy bagel sandwich hangover cures. At least here if you don’t like SBUX you can go to any number of unique independent or local chain shops. Having recently escaped their ubiquitous “regulah” coffee, I wouldn’t wish dunkin on my worst enemy, much less my wonderful new coffee haven home of Seattle.

    Comment by RS — 12:35 pm September 13, 2007 #

  16. The Starbucks on Admiral and 41st has deteriorated IMO; every second coffee I’ve had there has been bad lately. The Stabucks in Safeway, depending on the barista, has better lattes than the one on 41st. I used to love Java Hut coffee, but a bizarre encounter with the person in charge (owner?) swore me off that place, no matter how good the coffee might be. It’s not a good idea to insult customers! (I have heard similar stories since then.) Good management and good customer service are key.

    Comment by Dis — 3:27 pm September 13, 2007 #

  17. To each their own of course but I prefer to frequent Diva, Ladro, Uptown or C&P. I’m still bitter that the Rainier Roaster became yet another Starbucks.

    Comment by Bayou — 4:25 pm September 13, 2007 #

  18. Dis – did you mean Java Bean on Avalon? If so I can understand if you had a “bizarre encounter”!

    Comment by Jen V. — 6:27 pm September 13, 2007 #

  19. I’m still bitter that Boston Market became Rainier Roaster ;)

    Comment by GenHillOne — 7:52 pm September 13, 2007 #

  20. Starbux Sux

    Comment by flipjack — 8:27 pm September 13, 2007 #

  21. Don’t forget Sleepless in Seattle on Alki–I’m a mocha connoisseur from way back and they are easily the best I’ve had here in WSea. And I’ve tried ‘em all!!

    Comment by Velvet Bulldog — 8:47 pm September 13, 2007 #

  22. Actually, I think Boston Market was where the Taco Time is now. Rainier Roaster was the first tenant in that building – and I miss them!

    Comment by Elizadon — 11:05 pm September 13, 2007 #

  23. flipjack…don’t hold back…tell us how you really feel about starbux…hehe

    Comment by Jan — 11:27 pm September 13, 2007 #

  24. Jen V………..yeah, Java Bean on Avalon, that’s the one I meant, thx. You must be familiar…..

    Comment by Dis — 7:28 am September 14, 2007 #

  25. RS- I agree with you; the coffee at Dunkin Donuts is not the best. I finally tried it last year and almost choked. I didn’t realize when you ask for cream and sugar they actually add it for you instead of leaving you room for cream so you could add it yourself. They must put in 1/4 cup of sugar for each cup of coffee. Ick.

    I love their donuts though and would love it if DD opened up a spot somewhere in this state!

    Comment by m — 7:45 am September 14, 2007 #

  26. I personally love Starbucks, and the one in the Safeway is not exactly a place I want to go work and hang out. Plus their baristas aren’t necessarily trained the same way, hence the occasionally bad lattes. Hooray for Starbucks taking over Infinity – I may be the only one that feels this way but I love the Starbucks brand! And the only other good coffee I’ve had in the junction so far has been at Bakery Nouveax.

    Comment by Kim — 9:13 am September 14, 2007 #

  27. Hooray for idiots like Kim that like starbucks. Let them bully every good indepenent shop out of town so we can only have one choice and live in a fascist society. The owners of Infinity espresso just lost their entire assets to a company that was sneaking behind their back and offered their landlord double per square foot without offering severence to Infinity. Infinity had been there for TEN YEARS!!!! Hooray for people who want to be seen with the the logo that represents ignorance. Starbucks uses automatic machines which means they cant change the grind, tamp their espresso, time a shot, or even properly clean their machines! Hooray for people who don’t know how good coffee tastes, that is the only way Starbucks can stay in business…profiting from stupidity.

    Comment by Robin — 10:04 pm September 18, 2007 #

  28. The best coffeeshops I’ve been to have been in Amsterdam.

    Comment by Erik — 10:46 pm September 18, 2007 #

  29. Infinity had been there for almost 20 years, one of the first and foremost in Seattle. The owners worked hard, dumped much cash, and earned what they put into that shop thru protecting our easy, everyday lives. I have discussed this with HS, and his position is that the management contacted him(SBUX) with the offer for the space. Jefferson Square Management should suffer from a major gut check on this one. You ruined some lives for a chain store tenant. Bravo.

    Comment by Kim — 12:21 am March 10, 2008 #

  30. coffee is as good as you want it to be. be nice and tip the barista/baristo when you walk/drive thru coffee establishment locale. or, make your own coffee.

    Comment by twittwat — 10:19 pm June 24, 2008 #

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