A "high profile" Starbucks at the Shops at Park Lane opened Tuesday at 5 a.m., and residents and office workers traipsed in and out as if it were already a fixture in the living-and-shopping complex.
But it's not just another coffee shop. The new, 2,400-square-foot Starbucks near U.S. Highway 75 and Park Lane seats 120 people and overlooks a park that feels like a teeny Klyde Warren. It has a large outdoor patio, designed for patio-loving Dallas folks, explains Traci York, Starbucks' regional vice president of operations. It's one of only a handful of the 250 area Starbucks stores that serves its special reserve coffee.
Perhaps most unique of all, however, is that the new Starbucks might eventually sell beer and wine, reports The Dallas Morning News' Maria Halkias. York wouldn't confirm the store would turn into a Starbucks Evenings. (That's the name for the special brand of Starbucks stores that serve beer, wine and special food after 4 p.m. You can find the stores in Chicago, Seattle, Portland and a few other cities, but none exist in Texas yet.)
"We believe this store will be special in many ways," York said when asked if it would be a Starbucks Evenings. She also said if a Starbucks Evenings were to open in the Dallas area, "this would be the type of store."
But alas, there's no beer and wine on opening day.
The store is centered on a long community table. Above it, four glass chandeliers and hundreds of slats of reclaimed wood artfully -- purposefully -- hide two 7-and-a-half-ton A/C units, which are located in the ceiling of the store because they can't go on the roof, explains Starbucks senior designer Cal Young.
Instead, there's a garden up there. The greens are fertilized, in part, with Starbucks coffee grounds. Residents and office workers who look down on the new coffee shop see a green roof, which was important to Shops at Park Lane management.
Coffee geeks will find new brews at this shop: Store manager and Starbucks coffee master Evan Vanderwall uses a several-step process, similar to wine or beer tasting, to taste the new reserve coffees. He described the shop's reserve Peruvian coffee as having notes of burnt sugar and black walnut.
The Shops at Park Lane Starbucks is one of only a handful in Dallas that brews reserve coffee, Vanderwall says. The exterior was designed by Gensler.
Aside from the high-profile touches, the store does feel like a familiar Starbucks, with a drink menu of lattes, frappuccinos and trendy new flat whites; plus La Boulange pastries and free wi-fi.
8026 Park Lane, Dallas -- in Shops at Park Lane.