Starbucks vs. Coffee Bean: Coffee Fixes Compared

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Difference between Starbucks and Coffee Bean

Coffee drinkers are a loyal lot, and it would take a lot to make them switch to another coffee place. Among the two most favored by the caffeine-loving population are Starbucks and Coffee Bean, and it is these two that are the subjects of this comparison article.

Coffee Bean


Starbucks or the Starbucks Corporation is a chain of coffeehouses based in Seattle, although it has numerous branches all over the United States and all over the world. Starbucks is in fact the largest coffeehouse company in the world, with more than 17,800 stores in 49 countries. In the United States alone, there are more than 11,000 Starbucks outlets, and the United Kingdom and Canada have a further 800 and 1,000 respectively. Among the products that Starbucks has on offer are brewed coffee, espresso-based drinks, a variety of cold drinks, coffee beans, and even salads, sandwiches, pastries, and Starbucks merchandise such as mugs and tumblers.

Coffee Bean, or The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, is a chain of coffeehouses based in Los Angeles. Owned by International Coffee & Tea, LLC, the first Coffee Bean outlet was launched in September of 1968, and it currently has more than 750 outlets in 22 countries all over the world. In the United States, Coffee Bean has branches in San Francisco, Las Vegas, Texas, and Detroit, although most of its outlets are located in Los Angeles, San Diego, Santa Barbara and Ventura. Many of the Coffee Bean locations outside California are actually franchises. The company also has a few branches in Southeast Asia, many of which were opened by Victor Sassoon of Singapore.

Accessibility and Style

Starbucks and Coffee Bean have quite different styles and product lines. By most accounts, Starbucks is more akin to a department store, and it contrasts sharply with Coffee Bean’s more “boutique” feel. Starbucks cafes can also be found in a lot more places, and there are even many areas where branches are located only a few steps from another.

Coffee Bean cafes on the other hand are usually a bit harder to come across, with branches typically tucked away in a small mall, or in grocery stores. This gives Coffee Bean a somewhat more exotic appeal, that Starbucks does not have given its near ubiquity.

That being said, Starbucks does offer a very stylish and distinct product line, with most blends offering just the perfect balance of ingredients. In addition, you can also personalize your drink to a remarkable degree, and the company even offers a line of seasonal drinks that are ideally suited to each season.


Most Starbucks branches generally offer warm and efficient service, although there are times when the harried staff may get an order wrong or forget it entirely. Coffee Bean could do with a lot more improvement in the services department, and they can take quite a long time to deliver your order.

Similarities and Differences


  • A chain of coffeehouses based in Seattle
  • Has more than 17,800 stores in 49 countries

Coffee Bean

  • A chain of coffeehouses based in Los Angeles
  • Currently has more than 750 outlets in 22 countries all over the world

Which coffee shop would you rather go to?
  • Starbucks
  • Coffee Bean

Discuss It: comments 4

  • Guest
  • tyler wrote on August 2012

I love starbucks!

  • Guest
  • traveler wrote on November 2013

I love Starbucks, but recently visited Pasadena and gave Coffee Bean a try. The only thing I ordered was the Vanilla latte and it was excellent. As a matter of fact, I went back every day while there. Great change off from Starbucks.!!!!Wish we had access to one here in Okc.

  • Guest
  • Dan wrote on December 2015

Honestly, I've found that Coffee Bean has better coffee but Starbucks actually has food (with protein) so if I just want coffee, I'll go to Coffee Bean but if I want breakfast, I'll go to Starbucks. I've never had a problem with service in either chain and always get my drinks within a minute or two of ordering max.

  • Guest
  • banana wrote on January 2016

i think Starbuck is more expensive and coffee bean will save you money

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