No Starbucks in Italy?

Old Nov 27th, 2014, 03:42 AM
  #21  
 
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I meant to add that I don't see why it is wrong for tourists and Italians to lament globalization and the standardization of food and drink to a lower standard. It doesn't take much for people to forget what quality food tastes like if they get in the habit of eating canned corporate stuff. America is living proof of that. I am heartened that tourists and many Italians appreciate how valuable the coffee and food traditions are, and how much they are under threat, and I am glad they don't want to see them destroyed by corporations (who often don't pay taxes by the way!). Even in some small towns in America, locals resist the entry of Starbucks, knowing it will drive the local cafe or coffee shop out of business.

It will not be an improvement to Italy if there is Starbucks in Italy, and there is something offensive about accusing tourists of trying to hold Italy back by expressing their distaste and dismay at seeing Starbucks fake ripoff culture spreading everywhere.

Those are not "daydreams." It is people recognizing what a nightmare globalization has turned out to be for anybody with any taste. I don't eat at Rossopomodoro or other chains in Italy, and think it is nearly a crime that big corporations like Eataly export crap Italian chain products like Nutella and market it to the world as a "taste of Italy."

There is nothing wrong at all in opposing this. It has been a terrible cultural development.
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Old Nov 27th, 2014, 04:00 AM
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I am going to add one more comment because I think some people really do need to hear and understand this:

People from all over the world travel to Italy because it is place where they can reconnect with many things of great value that have been destroyed in other places in the modern world. They come to Italy because Italy is a place where these valuable things are part of the everyday culture -- something so simple as an excellent cup of coffee for less than a euro, served in a neighborly way. They see that Italy supports this culture and they are forming ideas about how to support where they live. They are giving it appropriate value, and they are using their experiences in Italy to help resist the thoughtless and destructive patterns that are destroying things of value in other places.

People visiting Italy is largely responsible for improving food quality in other cultures, developing the notions of urban farms, the reintroduction of public space and multi-generaltional sociability as a true value in public planning, and just in life in general. When people see these things in Italy they are not "daydreaming." They are thinking, observing, and treasuring something of true worth.

To mock that is wrong, and self-destructive. Most people are not selfishly insisting on keeping Italy "in the past" for their own private pleasure. They are pointing to Italy as a future model for the world to adopt so there is more sharing. Of course tourists aren't as articulate as corporate slicksters in developing an alternative narrative. But to step in and try to strangle that emerging, anti-globalization rhetoric with mockery is the real stupidity.
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Old Nov 27th, 2014, 04:09 AM
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I keep forgetting to add (need more coffee) is that the one thing Starbucks did borrow from Italy is the custom of paying for your coffee first, at the cash register, rather than sitting and giving your order to a waiter.
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Old Nov 27th, 2014, 04:25 AM
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I love everything about Starbucks, apart from their coffee.

And I mean that. I collect their city mugs when I travel (including now a new Thailand addition to my collection) and have close to 40 mugs now. I have four books about Starbucks. I like their corporate culture and am happy that Howard Schultz appreciates his employees and treats them well. I like that any time I visit one overseas I can check my email and Facebook. Their stores are clean. And so on.

I'm not a huge fan of their coffee, though. It's just not that good. It's not horrible by any stretch - but it's not that good.

Every so often I will get a mocha, and now with the season a peppermint mocha - and it's a nice once in a while treat but it really is too sweet and cloying. I had a pumpkin spice latte once, and while the initial sips were tasty, I couldn't even finish a third of it - it was just too much. So that was it for the PSL. I would occasionally get their blonde roast, but I'd still have to put over an inch of half and half in it, as well as a packet of sugar.

I have had their espresso before, and asked for it in a real cup - which does make a difference. That was not bad, but still not like the espresso I have had in Rome which is just amazing.
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Old Nov 27th, 2014, 04:35 AM
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"and here are pictures of Cafe Sperl, Cafe Landtmann and Cafe Hawelka in Vienna"

Cafe Sperl served some of the worst, burned-out coffee I've ever tasted. And the booth I sat in needed serious reupholstering. Lumpy and there were even springs (or some other kind of wiring) sticking out.
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Old Nov 27th, 2014, 04:36 AM
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I'm rather happy Starbuck's is not in Italy. Italy is my happy place and we spend a month there every summer experiencing Italian things and not looking for American things. If I want to experience American things I would stay here all 12 months.

The ONLY reason we enter McDonald's in Italy is to use the bathrooms. If Starbuck's were to open in Italy that would also be the only reason to stop in.

They would, however, be easy to find...you could just follow the smell of burnt coffee.

Buon viaggio,
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Old Nov 27th, 2014, 07:25 AM
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<i><font color=#555555>"I am going to add one more comment"</font></i>
<i><font color=#555555>"I keep forgetting to add"</font></i>

Good GRIEF, Hurricane Sandy! You're on a ROLL, why stop now?
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Old Nov 27th, 2014, 07:46 AM
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What is Starbucks?>

Tis from Little Orphan Annie and means nothing in relation to the brew.
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Old Nov 27th, 2014, 10:48 AM
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Forbidding Starbucks or McDonalds is a totally ineffective way to stop globalization. The only thing that will stop the phenomenon is not to patronize these globalized businesses. Why don't people try to stem the tide in their own countries instead of decrying it in other countries?

Italy hasn't forbidden the opening of a Starbucks, and there are already many other fast-food chains here. Starbucks will come here when they think they can make a profit.

The culture in Italy is changing rapidly. When I arrived over sixteen years ago, on summer evenings, there were always children playing in the streets, and adults sat outside their homes chatting and playing cards. This was something I had seen in the US in my childhood, but it had disappeared thirty years earlier. I had always assumed that television and air conditioning had been the death knell of community life. Air conditioning was rare in Italy sixteen years ago, and television was so bad that it was no competition for a game of briscola. Now, air conditioning is arriving, but television is, if anything, worse. There is cable, though.

The kids no longer play on the streets; they're indoors pursuing a digital social life or playing video games. The parents both work, often long hours, and the evening is devoted to catching up with household tasks. Families are picking up take out or eating out more often. Young families I see at the supermarket are buying lots of prepackaged heat-and-eat meals. I may deplore the trend, but I can't blame the people caught up in the maelstrom.

Several organizations we belong to have given up the social meals they used to have, laboriously prepared by volunteers. The people who know how to prepare ragù for 75 people are getting too old for the work, and the people who are young enough have neither the time nor the expertise.

Mom and pop shops are closing because the younger generation can't make a living from them. The little family farms are slowly disappearing for the same reason. Maybe if the younger generation didn't need smart phones and iPads and maxi-screen TVs, and two cars per family, and a separate bedroom for each child, and intercontinental holidays, they could live on what their parents lived on.

What could be done to stop all this? Send women back to the kitchen? Change the whole basis of the economy so that everyone has less money but more leisure? Make kilometer-zero foods as cheap as agribusiness foods? Legislate everyone back to an idyllic past? These remedies are either close to impossible or have ethical impediments.

Obliterating Starbucks won't stop globablization. A radical change in how we live and what we feel we need would be a first step. How many of you are willing to do without all the baubles? If not, there's no point in excoriating Starbucks.
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Old Nov 27th, 2014, 11:19 AM
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Starbucks will come to Italia sooner or late - I remember the flap when MacDonalds (as many Europeans seem to call it) opened one by the Spanish Steps in Rome - many cities subsequently of the slow food movement insured no Golden Arches in them by simply zoning them out.

But the Mickey ds by the Spanish Steps was perpetually thronged with local youths from its opening - even though they served a buffet of Italian foods nearly all Italians or whoever the young folk were went straight for a Mig Mac and fries, etc.

McDonalds did an end around the virtual banning of their expansion I understand by simply buying a large Italian burger chain - Burghy I believe it were called - and instantly had a present in many Italian big cities (but still eschewed by the slow food Luddite movement) - now many Italians seem to love McDonalds and the thought of fast food not dealing with at times surly wait staff, etc.

But it seems there is no coffee house chain in Italy to buy - only traditional caffes featuring coffee and gelato and stale sandwiches (talk about food quality - the pastries and snack food I've had in cafes wasn't often fresh or really tasty - like something you get in first-class on many Italian trains.

But there must be a demand for a place where foslks can come and get free WI-FI or read or study - like around universities - maybe there are such places as it's been a couple of years since I've been to Italy but the demand must surely be there - never seen anyone plop down for hours in a caffe to study or use WI-FI.

So lament it or not Starbucks is on the way.
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Old Nov 27th, 2014, 11:33 AM
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"What is Starbucks?

I get an idea of what Dunkin Donuts is, basically fat and sugar for people who cannot spell"

Priceless Bilbo.

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Old Nov 27th, 2014, 11:37 AM
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Ta Dickie
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Old Nov 27th, 2014, 11:44 AM
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Ta Ta for now! On Coronation Street they always say Ta Ta not just Ta it seems!
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Old Nov 27th, 2014, 11:58 AM
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Ta : Lancashire speak for "thank you"
Ta Ta : Yorkshire speak for " good bye for now"

Pal do you learn anything on your travels?
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Old Nov 27th, 2014, 12:01 PM
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The reason why there are no Starbucks in Italy is because they are shite.

Lowland Scots speak for the truth.
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Old Nov 27th, 2014, 12:16 PM
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Pal do you learn anything on your travels?

Ta for the correcto and Ta Ta for now!

I'm Shanty Irish my dad said on his side - what's that mean to you? - ancestors from Threepwood (near Melrose - Hunter clan) - is that Lowland Scotland? If so I must speak the truth.

Ta Ta!
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Old Nov 27th, 2014, 02:18 PM
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My father said that in Glasgow, when he was a wee boy,tbey said "Ta ta th' noo."
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Old Nov 27th, 2014, 03:10 PM
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ta and tata are also used in Australia meaning thanks and bye . Most babies learn to say ta amongst their 1st words.
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Old Nov 27th, 2014, 03:49 PM
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Lots of the coffee bars I've been in in Italy have free wi-fi, you don't need Starbucks for that. And I must have better luck at picking them than you Pal because I've had pretty good luck with the fresh sandwiches and pastries, if they look stale I move on to the next place where they aren't.
And Starbucks has the worst baked goods ever, hands down.

And as interesting as bvlenci's comments are on how things have changed in Italy I don't really see how Starbucks necessarily will fit into that whole time saving, people pressed for time thing when you can already get your coffee fix fast in Italy and the coffee actually tastes good.

I am not saying ban Starbucks but I think if it opened in Italy it would suffer the same fate it did in Australia. They did "stem the tide" there. Lots of us here in North America vote with our feet too as far as businesses we support or don't support. (for as much good as it does, lots of people in North America obviously love Starbucks which is fine, I don't hate it but really don't care for it's products much.)
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Old Nov 27th, 2014, 03:59 PM
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I can't believe <b>this</b> hasn't been queried yet: [from the OP] - <I>" a recent survey found that 70 million cups of espresso are drunk in Italy each year. That's 600 shots per person,"</I>

Given that the population of Italy is pushing 61 million that's actually very little over one per capita per annum.

I suspect the 70 million figure is incorrect (600 p.a would equate to close on 36.5 <I>billion</I> espressos drunk annually - a figure I also have trouble reconciling). If ABC (or PQ) can't get this number, fundamental to the thrust of the argument, correct well, I for one, can't be bothered to read on.

Dr D.
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