Beloved Canadian coffee chain Tim Hortons has announced it will be opening 1,500 branches of the shop throughout China over the next 10 years. With locations across Canada and the US, the company also recently opened its first Southeast Asian store in Manila in 2017.
Tim Hortons President Alex Macedo stated on the company website, “We have two main priorities at Tim Hortons: building and strengthening our brand in Canada and expanding our iconic Canadian brand to the rest of the world. China’s population and vibrant economy represent an excellent growth opportunity for Tim Hortons in the coming years. We have already seen Canada’s Chinese community embrace Tim Hortons, and we now have the opportunity to bring the best of our Canadian brand to China with established partners who have expertise in the industry and the country.”
China has earned its place as the fastest-growing coffee market in the world, with Starbucks announcing plans to double the number of shops in China to 5,000 by 2021, opening 500 stores every year.
Along with coffee, Tim Hortons serves doughnuts, pastries, muffins, bagels and sandwiches.
What about Hong Kong?
Candie Clapier, Communications Manager for Restaurant Brands International, the US company that owns Burger King and that bought the Tim Hortons franchise in 2014 , wouldn’t confirm whether Hong Kong would be amongst the first of the China locations to open, saying, “We appreciate your interest in Tim Hortons, but we are not able to share details on restaurant openings at this time. However, we will be sure to connect with you closer to launch.”
We can but hope.
Here’s a pic of those little doughnut holes of goodness – Timbits – to stir up the salivary glands
Who was this Tim Horton guy?
Like all things beloved by Canadians, it involves hockey.
Tim Horton was a hockey player for the Toronto Maple Leafs (who have the most striking hockey jerseys of all hockey teams, just saying). He launched the first Tim Hortons restaurant in 1964 in Hamilton, Ontario, and the coffee there went on to become a national treasure.
When they do arrive in Hong Kong, the Tim Hortons shops will likely bear little resemblance to the original Canadian stores, given that most in the Great White North are located in car parks and oft accessed by drive- through. But if the coffee and Timbits remain consistent with the offerings by the Canuck shops, we’ll be in double-double heaven.
Your guide to Tim Hortons talk
When Timmies arrives in Hong Kong – or even if we have to pop over to China to get a cuppa – you’ll need to know how to converse in Canadian coffee language. There’s a very special lingo here, and it doesn't involve adding “eh” to everything...
If you like your coffee with one cream and one sugar, that’s a regular. It doesn’t refer to the sizes, which are straightforward: small, medium, large and extra large. For example, you might say, “I’d like a medium regular, please.” And then you’ll receive a medium-sized coffee with one cream and one sugar.
For two creams and two sugars, that’s a double-double (see, it’s easy).
For three creams and three sugars, it’s a triple-triple.
And for four creams and four sugars, that’s a four-by-four. And, yes, this really is a thing.
If you want milk, you always have to state this – otherwise the coffee will be made with cream.
For black coffee, just say black coffee (and your chosen size).
Don’t call it Tim Hortons
In all contexts, when discussing Tim Hortons, say Timmies, never the full name. It’s affectionate (like most Canadians).
What are Timbits?
Timbits are known as doughnut holes everywhere outside Canada. They come in many flavours, and some of them are even patriotic – like the Maple Dip Timbits.
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