This was a hard review to write, and by that, I mean I gave in to the temptation to take a tiny taste of cold foam immediately after leaving Dunkin’ and then had to exert a downright colossal amount of willpower to make the suddenly-excruciating three-minute walk home without downing the entire thing.
First, I need to shine a spotlight on the lid that delivered this sweet sneak peek. If you’ve had a drink with cold foam before, you’re probably already familiar with its wider-than-usual opening that serves a mouthful of intact foam with each no-straw-required sip (before the foam inevitably melts, anyway).
Next, I need to thank said lid for allowing me to experience such a delicious flavor. The Salted Caramel Cream Cold Brew name is predictably accurate, as right off the bat, the foam packs a mix of salt, caramel, and cream flavors. Interestingly, though, while I don’t usually think of either salt or caramel as being subtle, they were not what stood out to me in my sampling. That honor goes to the foam’s creaminess, and I don’t just mean its soft, luxurious texture. The flavor that it most reminded me of was actually Twinkie filling. Sure, its rich, sweet taste played a large part in that, but so did the sheer feeling of comfort it brought me. Coffee tends to get a bad rap through its association with the stressed out, overworked, and under-slept, but this saccharine cold foam had me feeling childlike wonder.
The cold brew (which I ordered black, though you can opt for cream) felt pretty standard with its dark, almost chocolatey flavor profile. While it was velvety and milder than a brew of the non-cold variety, I didn’t get much of the tang of saltiness nor the buttery richness of caramel from the drink itself. Notably, it performed a bit of color-changing magic. Remember that inevitably melty foam? The coffee started out a very deep brown but ended up practically tan from foam seepage, which presumably contributed to its rich, silky taste. I’ve witnessed the occasional schism between “serious” coffee drinkers who prefer a plain and simple experience and those like myself who welcome every frilly flavor out there, but I don’t think this offering is any less elegant for its sweetness, achieving a middle ground that can appeal to both sides.
I will say, I’m not sure why this is specifically a spring menu item. Maybe I’m just distracted by the thought of caramel apples, but the flavor strikes me as autumnal, if anything. So it’s a bit of a seasonal stretch, but eh, tomayto, tomahto (or cair-a-mel, car-mel).
Ultimately, if you’re not already a cold brew fan, I don’t think this will be the drink to convert you. But if you are a curious connoisseur — or if you’re just looking for some extra pep in your step and want a smooth, multifaceted flavor to help you achieve it — I’d recommend checking this one out.
Purchased Price: $5.00
Size: Small (12 oz)
Rating: 7 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: 140 calories, 2.5 grams of fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 1.5 grams of saturated fat, 10 milligrams of cholesterol, 75 milligrams of sodium, 28 grams of total carbohydrates, 27 grams of total sugars, 0 grams of fiber, and 1 gram of protein.