New Caribou opens in Edina

Unique features offer new opportunities for students


Ruby Stillman

A cold press shake and lemon poppy seed bread from the new Caribou Coffee store in Edina at an invite only event March 25. The store features a new interior design and food and drink options unique to the location which opens March 27.

Maggie Klaers and Isabel Kjaer

As Caribou Coffee employee senior Ben Klepfer reflected on his experience working at the company’s new location, he thought of the new menu being introduced at the store.

“(The store is) going to have stuff on the menu that other Caribou Coffees don’t have. It’s like a pilot store for the company,” Klepfer said. “It’s got a couple food items on the menu that other places don’t have and more expensive Nitro Cold Brew stuff.”

Senior Sara Anderson said when she visited the new Caribou Coffee store, she noticed it has a larger menu and more seating than an average Caribou Coffee.

“It’s really nice. It’s a lot bigger than the other Caribou Coffees I’ve been to. They have an extended menu with coffee ice cream floats,” Anderson said.

According to district manager for Caribou Coffee Emily Prues, this Caribou Coffee’s food menu in particular will attempt to reflect their focus on healthy ingredients more than other locations.

Anderson said she plans to go to the new Caribou Coffee rather than the one closer to her house.

“There’s a Caribou Coffee that’s really close to my house, but I’d probably just go to this one instead because there’s so much more stuff,” Anderson said.

This location will provide an example of the new model for Caribou Coffee’s store design, according to Prues.

“This is our newest concept for Caribou Coffee Coffee, based around elevated design elements,” Prues said. “We’re updating our look, trying to keep it to the original Caribou Coffee look, but making it a little more modern and a little more individualized for the neighborhood.”

“We’re offering fresh food items that we’ve never been able to offer before in our Caribou Coffees,” Prues said. “We’ve always had a focus around clean label and using really good ingredients, but our food platform has not necessarily mirrored that.”

Klepfer said the store hosted a friends and family event March 25 for employees to practice making beverages and preparing food with customers in a comfortable setting.

“It was an invitation-only, friends and family thing. You could come in and get a food or drink item free just to help the team practice the menu, delivering stuff, getting everything prepared and taking orders,” Klepfer said.

According to Prues, the event acts as one of the company’s most important tools in their training program, while also allowing some of the public to taste test the new food and beverages.

“We usually let each team member invite either between four to six of their friends and family and then, for the friends and family, it’s a great benefit because they get to come in and try things for free,” Prues said. “I have to say, this friends and family event went really smooth. The team that we put together is so strong and have such great personalities. They’ve just been doing a phenomenal job.”

Klepfer said the store is designed well, with an abundance of seating arrangements and study spots.

“It has a really nice interior. There (are) some couches and seats around a fireplace, where it would be really good to go and study,” Klepfer said.

Prues said all of Caribou Coffee’s stores are constructed to provide a versatile and functional venue geared toward getting work done.

“Everywhere you sit, you can find multiple outlets,” Prues said. “It allows students to come in, plug in their laptop for their devices and study.”