Starbucks bets big on olive oil-infused Oleato coffee line

A Starbucks' cold brew with oat milk and olive oil? That's what Starbucks (SBUX) says will be the next revolutionary coffee ritual for consumers across the globe.

On Tuesday, the coffee giant unveiled Starbucks Oleato (which means "oiled" in Italian). The new line of coffee drinks is made with Starbucks' arabica coffee and is infused with a spoonful of Partanna cold pressed, extra-virgin olive oil. Starting on Wednesday, February 22, customers can try it at Starbucks stores in Italy. Then this spring it will be offered at select stores in Southern California, followed by those in Japan, the Middle East, and the United Kingdom later this year.

The Seattle-based company worked with the family-operated, Sicily-based olive oil producer Partanna to bring the lineup to life, which includes Oleato Caffè Latte, Oleato Golden Foam Cold Brew and Oleato Iced Shaken Espresso.

Amy Dilger, who helps develop new ideas for Starbucks, says the blend of coffee and olive oil creates a "a velvety smooth, rich texture, with the buttery, round flavors imparted by the olive oil perfectly pairing with the soft, chocolatey notes of the coffee."


Just like the latte, PSL (pumpkin spice latte), nitro cold brew and iced shaken espresso, Starbucks' goal is to create a new genre with Starbucks Oleato.

So whose idea was this? Interim CEO Howard Schultz, who leaves the helm of the company for the third time, effective April 1, 2023, bringing his 40-year career full circle.

In the release, Schultz said, "Oleato represents the next revolution in coffee that brings together an alchemy of nature’s finest ingredients," which he says he discovered during a trip to Italy last summer. This comes 40 years after his first trip to Milan in 1983 that inspired his initial desire to "bring the ritual of handcrafted espresso to Starbucks and to America."

He added, "Oleato has opened our eyes to fresh new possibilities and a transformational way to enjoy our daily coffee."

Starbucks Oleato Core Beverages (Courtesy: Starbucks)
Starbucks Oleato Core Beverages (Courtesy: Starbucks)

Starbucks CFO Rachel Ruggeri could not share any details during her latest appearance on Yahoo Finance, but did say that the brand has "always found ways to try to surprise and delight our customers, and this will prove to do something in that fashion."

Customization remains as a key brand strategy. In the last quarter, sales of modifiers such as different syrups, sauces, and alternative milks, among others, were up 28% year-over-year in the U.S. alone.

Ruggeri said these unique offerings help bring customers into the store.

"Part of our proposition is you have to come into the stores because so much of what we make, it's hard to make at home. This is another way to lean into that area, give customers a reason to come in to our stores, and, importantly, a reason to come back."

Brooke DiPalma is a reporter for Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter at @BrookeDiPalma or email her at

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