Customers, what do you think of the new "healthier" drink? Baristas, what kind of reaction are you getting? (Press release: "Starbucks Launches Vivanno Nourishing Blends")
When I stopped to get my grande Pike this morning my favorite barista gave me a coupon for a free Vivanno. I'll be trying it later today. I'll let you know how it goes!
July 15, 2008 at 07:21 AM
Yesterday I go in for my shift really looking forward to my Mango Orange Banana Blend Vivanno... and we were all out of bananas... Sad day...
We're still in the middle of the Made Fresh for You Frappuccino test in Austin so the fanfare for Vivanno is very quiet around here... We don't even have menu boards with them on it yet... And we can't even wear our shirts for another week and a half or so...
July 15, 2008 at 08:05 AM
I'm in my store right now, and our poor RMT is walking around in a banana costume handing out samples. the customer reaction so far has been tepid, some people like to pretend they're too grown up to appreciate how funny a banana costume is. overall I think the drink will perform well though, if this morning is any sort of litmus test.
July 15, 2008 at 08:09 AM
I got the Banana Chocolate Blend this morning and it is delicious!!! I can't wait to try the Orange Mango!
July 15, 2008 at 08:17 AM
"I'm in my store right now, and our poor RMT is walking around in a banana costume handing out samples. the customer reaction so far has been tepid, some people like to pretend they're too grown up to appreciate how funny a banana costume is."
That's funny in the wrong way...
Pat Nerr |
July 15, 2008 at 08:24 AM
As a partner, I think it's another degradation of our brand and our company. We're a coffee-house, not a smoothie-shack or milkshake-condominium...I see this as yet another step in the wrong direction.
Let's get back to basics...lose the blended crap, murde r the frapuccino, get rid of the breakfast sandwiches now...and serve some friggin' coffee and tea. That's our business. We're the best at it when we're not trying to be something other than a coffeehouse.
July 15, 2008 at 08:25 AM
Shift here. I've been pathologically avoiding learning how to make the thing... or peel the bananas (yes, they gave us training on how to peel bananas). If I wanted to make smoothies, I'd work for Jamba Juice. Since I'm quite happy with Doubleshot plus energy... I don't expect much.
Sue De Nimes |
July 15, 2008 at 08:25 AM
A Starbucks Rep just brought in samples to the radio station (can you say "Free Advertisement"?). I tried the Orange Mango. Delicious! I can see these being a very good sell for the chain. I'm curious what the sugar content is on these.
July 15, 2008 at 08:29 AM
I received an orange-mango sample yesterday, and bought one later in the day, because I liked it quite a bit. My partner got the choco-banana, so I tried that too. I like the bittersweet chocolate flavor - it's much more upfront that I expected. I may not order these often though - it seems like really a lot of work for the baristas. In the store I was at, they used frozen banana chunks, so there was no peeling, at least not at point-of-sale.
July 15, 2008 at 08:36 AM
The drink is awesome, but I hate the "I work at a coffee house, stick to coffee and tea, Starbucks". That really makes no sense. I believe that Wal-Mart should only sell things on a WALL, not on the ground or in display cases. That makes a lot of since, doesn't it?
Regardless of any new non-coffee and tea item, the coffee will always be the same standard.
July 15, 2008 at 08:44 AM
It was kinda hard to ignore the girl at the register wearing the banana hat. She asked me if I liked bananas, and then proceeded to give me a coupon. I will try it eventually - if it's made with just fruit, protein, coffee, and no syrups or nasty sugary crap, I will probably like it. It seems to be more nutritionally sound than what Jamba Juice has on the menu...Jamba Juice is a sugary nightmare.
This seems like a decent new item to me, though I don't know how the majority of customers will respond. The mainstream likes to talk a good game about having healthier alternatives, but at the point of sale they often end up choosing the same old crap. That's what I suspect will happen with this, though some people like me will be more enthusiastic about it.
Tall Drip |
July 15, 2008 at 08:51 AM
i'm off today so i'm curious how these are doing at our store.
re; pee, i also hate the "do away with the frappucino" attitude. i only drink them once in a blue blue moon, but i highly, highly doubt starbucks could pay me and give me health care if we only sold plain old brewed coffee. (and i'd probably be bored out of my mind if i didn't have to make backups and clean blender pitchers!)
July 15, 2008 at 08:57 AM
I can't tell vouch for the exact sugar content in the drink, but the Orange Mango Banana Blend only has the natural sugars in the Banana and the Orange Mango Juice (which is made by Naked Juice, who do not add sugar to their juices.) The Banana Chocolate Blend does have added sugar from the mocha syrup however.
July 15, 2008 at 09:05 AM
What? How did you come to that comparison? You do know that Starbucks started out as a coffee shop, I guess. But you really think Wal-Mart started out as a store that sold walls? You are really unaware that the company is named after its founder, the late Sam Walton? Get it? Wal, Walton?
I feel sad right now that you thought you had a good one there. What's next? K-Mart should only sell the letter K?
Herman M |
July 15, 2008 at 09:28 AM
I tried the orange banana mango viviano this morning (at the roseville mn store across from the rosedale mall) and I thought it was excellent (I had mine made with skim milk)! I didn't taste any chalkiness others described.
I look forward to trying the Banana Chocolate next time. Some may be put off by the $4.00 price (that's what it cost here after taxes).
July 15, 2008 at 09:29 AM
July 15, 2008 at 09:31 AM
The stockmarket isn't warming up to Vivannos:
STARBUCKS CP(NasdaqGS: SBUX)
NEW Real-time: 13.50 -0.50 (-3.57%) 10:29am ET
Verismo Wiz |
July 15, 2008 at 09:40 AM
I got a Chocolate Banana Vivanno this morning.
It's good, but it tastes pretty powdery. This is apparently because the barista didn't level off the whey powder like she was supposed to. My Starbucks friend said it's technically not a Vivanno then.
July 15, 2008 at 09:43 AM
The market LOVES vivano.
July 15, 2008 at 09:43 AM
I tried a Mango-Orange-Banana Vivanno this morning from a store in Arlington, VA. Yuck! It tasted like it was either made with unripe bananas or poison. Seriously. While there was no chalky aftertaste, it had an extremely bitter aftertaste. I will try the Chocolate-Banana once but I won't be going back for the M-O-B one anytime soon!
July 15, 2008 at 09:47 AM
Uhmmm, 90% of the companies listed on the down and 80% on the Nasdaq are down today. I don't think it's Vivano more than overall pesimistic market sentiment (especially the retail sector).
July 15, 2008 at 09:49 AM
it's all crap
July 15, 2008 at 09:52 AM
I'm in Los Angeles, where they also launched the Sorbetto today. I loved it. It was a sweet, tancy icy drink. Very light and refreshing. On the menu, it was clear that the drink used Pinkberry frozen yogurt. My drink was the original Pinkberry flavor mixed with a pink, tangy citrus flavor.
July 15, 2008 at 09:58 AM
Why are we even thinking about viviano? Did anyone else notice that Gazebo is back? Hello heaven in a cup.
July 15, 2008 at 10:27 AM
The Orange Mango Banana has 32 grams of sugar in it. I dont remember the Chocolate Banana off the top of my head.
Thank God I don't have to work today... Manager was out looking for banana costumes last week for everyone working today
July 15, 2008 at 10:32 AM
This option seems "healthy" in the Starbucks way, like their "healthy" pastries. I got the scoop on the nutritional information from a barista this morning. 16g of protein, 32g of SUGAR and 270 calories. I looked up my grande nonfat latte 130 cal, 13g protein,and 18g sugar.
The new "healthy" breakfast cookie they have (the berry star cookie) has 300 calories and 10g of fat. Starbucks, please don't fake healthy. If you are going to do it, DO IT.
July 15, 2008 at 10:49 AM
I just had a quick question. I know they are marketing this and Sorbetto as healthy but what are the calories on the Sorbetto. I had a customer ask me and I cant find it anywhere! seems kinda weird they arent sharing that as openly as the vivanno. Oh and have to say....not a fan of these drinks but people are saying good things about them!
July 15, 2008 at 10:51 AM
Did you forget about the 6g of fiber that comes in the Vivano??? How much fiber is in your latte?
July 15, 2008 at 10:59 AM
somedude: Bananas and lattes have sugar in them - fructose for the banana and lactose for the milk in the latte. Sugar does not necessarily mean the white powered stuff.
July 15, 2008 at 11:07 AM
I heard 5g of fiber. That's nothing you don't get from a slice of bread at lunch. I do fine on fiber myself, probably because I prepare my own food, I don't need supplemental fiber in my diet. I guess it's just the average American's ideas on nutrition that are messed up.
July 15, 2008 at 11:09 AM
True me, I'm very aware of that. I'm just skeptical of calling a drink with almost as much sugar as a coke in it healthy. I'm aware the sugar is coming from differnt sources. If you want healthy though, try eating the whole fruit instead of drinking the concentrated juice (therefore concentrated sugar. That way you won't have to add fiber powder to it because you extracted the fiber in the juicing process.
July 15, 2008 at 11:11 AM
I think Vivanno is going to be one of those things that Starbucks looks back on and says, "Well, that was a good idea at the time."
At my store, we've been talking it up to local fitness centers and hospitals as a meal-alternative for those on the go, but if I were in their shoes, I'd go to the deli across the street before I'd get a protein "nourishing blend."
Not to mention, since we've been sampling them every day, some of my partners have noticed some of the, uh, interesting side effects the extra fiber in our diet has caused.
While I don't very much like the drink (or making it--takes too long!), I'm sure it will do well enough that it will last... for a while anyway.
double blended |
July 15, 2008 at 11:15 AM
(including myself pre-close tonight) will have to wear some run-of-the-mill promo t-shirt. All I know is that I'm certainly not wearing some ridiculous awkward costume while futilely attempting to clean the floors and the washrooms.
On another note, are we now allowed to refer to the Vivanno as a "smoothie?" Those pathetic marketing/training videos specifically told partners to shy away from referring to the Vivanno as either Frappuccino or smoothie-like. Yet, it's new slogan per these same corporate mouthpieces is "Today is the new smoothie."
Once again, I'm glad I declined my Starbucks stock options, otherwise I'd be taking a huge bath at this point.
Continued freefall to under $10.00/share by end of August.
Westcoast Barista |
July 15, 2008 at 11:25 AM
I tried a sample of the mango/orange/banana yesterday when a local store was practicing and was amazed at how good it was.
Mike in Seattle |
July 15, 2008 at 11:26 AM
Yes, you're absolutely right, whole, raw fruits and vegetables are the healthiest thing that just about anyone can eat.
BUUUUUUTT, come on now: as far as it goes, if you are someone who is buying smoothie-type drink at a cafe, this is pretty wholesome.
At the health foods store I used to work at, we had some truly healthy smoothies. I'm talking about unsweetened yoghurt plus celery, carrots, plus wheatgrass and peppers.
It was, shall we say, spicy. Actually I enjoyed them sometimes, but the conventional market wouldn't hold that for a moment, and you know it.
July 15, 2008 at 11:27 AM
A banana costume????
Are you kidding????
Talk about an off brand move.
Who thought of that one? - a former Chuckee Cheese executive.
Howard needs to hire someone with 'come back' experience. I think he still thinks everything he touches is gold. He has the potential to make it worse. Starbucks employees dressed up like bananas!
Turning a company built on status around in a questionable ecomony is a more difficult task than building the brand in the first place. Howard, retreat and seek advice from those who have blazed a simliar trail.
July 15, 2008 at 11:35 AM
I see the banana costume as tongue-in-cheek, an attempt to show that we don't take ourselves too seriously...
But I agree its off brand. I don't know that I support that angle- there are 100 things we could do, besides dress up in a banana costume...
July 15, 2008 at 12:00 PM
Can anyone tell me if these smoothies are also debuting in Canada today?
July 15, 2008 at 12:04 PM
Tried the Orange Mango version moments ago, with the addition of soy milk and matcha. Very smooth, no chalky aftertaste. However, none of the (4) baristas present knew exactly how to make it, what the nutritional info was (they took issue with the sign, saying it was incorrect) and whether to charge extra for soy (they decided not to). I'd like to see the process go a bit more smoothly, but I enjoyed the drink and will likely order it again.
July 15, 2008 at 12:17 PM
Just got through a day hearing people ask for "Tall Viviannos..." Not only mispronouncing Vivanno but trying to get different sizes. To quote my favorite Hives song, "Hate to Say I Told You So..."
Barista Joe |
July 15, 2008 at 12:18 PM
Banana costumes? And I thought the inflatable monkeys at my store were cliche.
double blended |
July 15, 2008 at 12:20 PM
Grabbed a Chocolate Banana one on the way to the library today. It has a flavor i would call muted, texturewise it is lovely. As a barista, i wonder how much of a pain these will be to make in practice. I still have mixed feelings about it.
July 15, 2008 at 12:29 PM
Willoughby, just curious as to which location you had this experience at?
July 15, 2008 at 12:32 PM
I am off today (amazing!), but have been drinking the Vivannos for the past week. Our store as frozen banana pieces due to the shortage or whatever. The drinks are time consuming to make-- they have to be blended two separate times. But other than that I think they are delicious. Yes, they have sugar, but it is good sugar from natural fruits. Not like the high fructose corn syrup found in other drinks. And the protein is great!
Customer responses to the samples have been very good! Plus, I typically hate our mocha-- but in the chocolate banana Vivanno, I think it tastes pretty good. I'm hoping the Vivannos will go over well and boost sales. I have a feeling my store may be the next to go if not...
July 15, 2008 at 12:42 PM
The Shops at the Arboretum in Richmond, VA.
July 15, 2008 at 01:16 PM
I enjoyed the taste and temperature of the orange mango flavor and matcha...Chilled, but not at a brain-freeze level. And the taste, as others have said, was light and muted...Definitely had a more solid nutritional feel than your typical smoothie.
However, the constant blender during the breakfast hour was a turnoff. If this drink becomes big, it means SB really is moving away from the premium coffee shop idea.
July 15, 2008 at 01:18 PM
first we were "getting back to basics" with the perfect espresso shot, steamed milk and 30 min freshly brewed Pike's Place....next to the test market with the made fresh for you frappicinos that take all these steps, all the room on our already to little counters..........and now, the VIVANNO, bananas and fruit flies......as we connect with the customers, we are supposed to tell them about the frapps, the vivanno, the perks SB card, the customer service survey, do they want a receipt...it has gotten ridiculous!!! Customers get annoyed with all the questions...and it makes the baristas feel like vacuum salespeople. The perfect shot and perfectly steamed milk have already gone to the wayside...old news, this week onto the next last ditch effort to bail SB out of the slump....
July 15, 2008 at 01:24 PM
Health-wise, this is certainly no worse than Jamba Juice, and probably somewhat better. 32g sugar is not that terrible, and I could probably get that to come down by asking the barista to go easy on the chocolate syrup.
At least SBUX isn't overloading so-called healthful smoothies with frozen yogurt, sherbet, and "juice" that is little more than fruit-flavored water with sugar, like Jamba. I actually hope this thing catches on.
Tall Drip |
July 15, 2008 at 01:42 PM
does the powder make anyone else's stomach churn?
July 15, 2008 at 01:44 PM
as a partner I am glad we're getting new drinks simply because I am tired of drinking the ones we have! I like change and I like learning to make new drinks. Maybe it won't be a hit, maybe it's not a "back to basics" thing, but I think it's pretty fun. And now I can add bananas to any drink we have!
I tried banana chocolate with espresso last night and it was pretty good. We hadn't received any mango juice yet. I hope they got some this morning.
I have noticed that since Christmas our siren's eye's are nowhere near as big as they were last year. Our store only had one box of new retail to put out. I know this is a way of getting back to coffee and having less crap to sell but I really like new mugs and stuff-it's like christmas for me.
Did anyone actually get the banana sharpies? The partner engagement kit list said we got 5 banana sharpies, but we didn't and neither did the store about 40 mins away. i want a damn banana sharpie!
July 15, 2008 at 01:45 PM
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