At more than 15,000 stores in 22 years, this man thirsts to visit every Starbucks on Earth

Winter claims to have visited at least 15,061 Starbucks locations in 55 countries and on four continents since 1997. (Source: Winter photos/CNN)

(CNN) - In what he calls an “extreme hobby,” one man has a goal to visit every Starbucks in the world. Having been to more than 15,000 locations in the past 22 years, he’s about halfway there.

A Texas man named Winter claims to have visited at least 15,061 Starbucks locations in 55 countries and on four continents since 1997.

When Winter started the mission 22 years ago at a Starbucks in Plano, Texas, there were only about 1,500 locations in the United States, and he thought he could visit each and every one of them. But the company has continued growing, with its 30,000th location opening in March in Shenzhen, China.

Even so, Winter is determined to keep going.

At every Starbucks he visits, Winter usually asks for a sample of drip coffee or, if they don’t have that, an espresso. He takes some pictures to add to his website and moves on.

At more than 15,000 locations, he’s now about halfway through his goal.

Winter says his quest is “an extreme hobby” that he’s dubbed “Starbucking.” At this point, he says he doesn’t even do it for the Starbucks coffee, which he no longer enjoys.

"It's hard to talk about a favorite Starbucks item because I don't enjoy the taste of Starbucks anymore," he said. "It's either tolerable or OK, but it's never good or great coffee anymore."

Winter says, for him, it’s all about connection. His Plano Starbucks was a second home, where he could meet fellow caffeine fiends. Over the years, he’s befriended coffee lovers on several different continents.

"Starbucks kind of gave me my big first circle of friends," he said.

Winter says he knows it’s “technically impossible” to visit every Starbucks location, especially since he now takes care of his ailing mother in Panama. But he’s just trying to get to as many as possible, as he explores the world one sample-sized cup of coffee at a time.

Copyright 2019 Winter photos via CNN. All rights reserved.




 
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