Tim Hortons to start serving premium lattes and espresso
Tim Hortons is diving into the premium coffee market. While the behemoth chain already offers "speciality" coffees, its latest plan involves made-to-order drinks using what it describes as premium ingredients and a $12,000 espresso machine.
As the CBC reports, the new drinks will be tried out in Vancouver and London, Ontario markets before being rolled out across the rest of the country. Franchises are being told to buy the expensive machine in advance of the full-scale rollout.
Current speciality drinks like lattes and cappuccinos on Tim Hortons' menus are made from powder, while the new drinks are brewed from Arabica beans that will be ground fresh and blended with steamed milk. It's a complete departure from the existing strategy.
The move comes as major coffee retailers like Starbucks and McDonalds race to provide more upscale offerings, a market that Tim Hortons had yet to tap in a meaningful way. It remains to be seen if people will buy them, particularly in a city like Toronto with such a robust independent coffee industry.
Stores can charge significantly more per drink for made-to-order lattes and cappuccinos, but the machines will be a major investment for some franchises.
Beyond the two test markets, these premium drinks won't likely be available elswehere in Canada until next spring. You can expect a massive advertising campaign to accompany their wide release.
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