Sunday, March 27, 2005


In the late 1980s when I was in high school, the only place to purchase a cup of coffee for a late night cramming was Winchell’s or 7-11. The only coffeehouse in town was the E-bar (e for espresso) located in a back alley in the low rent area that is now Old Towne Pasadena. The E-bar attached the Arts Center crowd and high school students who did not have fake IDs for late socializing. In college during the early 1990s, there were about there were about a half dozen cafes – which served espresso – but not coffeehouses. In 1993 or so the second Starbucks opened on the Westside across the Westside Pavilion. During the morning rush, one could expect to stand in line 20 deep for an espresso drink and wait 10 or 15 minutes for a drink. It seems to me that Starbucks created the premium coffee market and coffeehouse culture in the United States.