How North Tahoe gets their caffeine fix amidst COVID19

Miranda Jacobson, Editor

COVID19 has put a number of businesses on hold or has shut them down altogether, and the coffee business is not immune to economic disruption. But people need their fix, and the industry has found new ways of selling drinks and at-home coffee, such as through drive-throughs and curbside pickup, but other places, like Incline Village’s Starbucks, have closed tentatively until April 6.

The store’s manager Curtis Swinger is hopeful the store will be able to open then but knows that might not be the case.

“This date can change as this situation is very fluid and we will continue utilizing the recommendations of the CDC and other health experts,” he said in an email interview.

While the store may be closed, its workers are still being paid through April 19, if necessary.

“If partners choose not to work or cannot work due to store closure, they will be paid for their scheduled shift up to April 19,” Swinger wrote. On top of that, all partners are offered one free food item a day at open stores, with an additional 50 percent off all food items after that. This way, Starbucks is able to help its employees outside of work, while still keeping select drive-throughs open.

Sophomore Hannah Tinley, who works at Starbucks, feels that her employers are doing a great job with their response to the pandemic.

“My manager calls twice a week, to keep us in the loop of what’s going on,” Tinely said in a phone interview. But that doesn’t change the fact that some of her favorite drinks are still out of reach.

“I have been making coffee at home, which is keeping me sane still, but I miss my matcha lattes and my cold brew. Hopefully, we will be able to have them again soon,” she said.

Even though Starbucks is closed, other locally-owned coffee shops are still offering curbside service. Drink Coffee Do Stuff began take out orders on March 21, according to its Instagram page, and still continues to sell beans at the front of the store, as well as online and in the local Raley’s grocery store.