Starbucks Launches “Green Apron Delivery” Pilot At Empire State Building

After months of will-they-won’t-they, Starbucks has officially begun tests of what it’s called the most-asked-for service: coffee delivery. About 12,000 coffee-lovers in Manhattan’s Empire State Building will have the opportunity to have cups of java dropped off at their workplace with the launch of a pilot program called Green Apron Delivery.

Starbucks announced the pilot project on Tuesday, about seven months after it was first reported that the coffee chain was eying the iconic building as testing grounds for its service.

Through the pilot, employees of the 150 tenants in the skyscraper can place orders from a pared down drink and food menu through a dedicated website. Delivery, which is capped at 15 items and comes with a $2 fee, will take place within 30 minutes of the order being processed.

A green-aproned barista then meets the customers with the delivery at a designated drop-off point, like a reception desk or common area.

While tourists visiting the building can stop by the company’s express store and cafe in the lobby, delivery is only available for those actually working in the 102-story office building.

The company says that the Empire State Building was the perfect choice for its tests, as the building-specific environment has a dense population of employees.

“New York City has always inspired us to consider new ways to innovate for our growing store portfolio and I cannot think of a better location to launch one of the most frequently requested services,” Cliff Burrows, group president, U.S. and Americas, said in a statement. “With Starbucks Green Apron Delivery, we’ve simply moved that moment of connection between our customer and the barista from our place to theirs.”

Starbucks, which first announced it was looking to get into the delivery game last fall, said back in March that it would begin two distinct approaches to testing such a service.

At the time, the second approach included delivery via a third-party service in Seattle. There was no word on Tuesday whether that approach was still in the works.