The Starbucks in the Central Intelligence Agency is unlike any other Starbucks. For one thing, nobody knows your name here.
So if you can’t give out a name to put on the cup, what do baristas have to go with? One employee says she now remembers a lot of the officers’ orders because of how frequent their visits are and labeling them by that. So at the CIA, there is always an “iced white mocha woman” or a “caramel macchiato guy.”
According to The Washington Post, a website bringing breaking news and analysis on politics, business, world, national news, entertainment, and more, this particular branch of Starbucks makes their employees and staff go through “rigorous interviews and background checks” for safety and confidentiality purposes.
They are also assigned “minders” who escort them outside once their work is finished.
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Here, no one can collect stickers or have frequent-customer card bonuses. The lines are exceptionally long in the morning and mid-afternoon; it tends to get on the nerves of people who work in the CIA. One senior worker’s main concern was how long the line was.
A lot of the reasons for setting up a Starbucks in the CIA HQ is rooted in the reality that working for this government agency can be really grueling. It’s why this particular Starbucks branch’s job as the agency coffee provider is so important.
They keep the many military and high-ranking CIA officers caffeinated on tired Monday mornings and night shifts that don’t seem to have an end in sight.
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The branch says looking closely at the orders, they usually get vanilla latte orders and lemon pound cake in the morning, and double espressos and sugary Frappuccinos by night.
What’s more, the coffee shop offers a safe haven for officers on the grind, learning a different language (usually German or Arabic), and recruiting staff to work in the agency. When Osama Bin Laden was at large, the chief of the team had been at this exact Starbucks recruiting a “key deputy for the effort” who ultimately helped them in the mission.