My first thought upon taking a sip of Wendy’s new Frosty Cream Cold Brew: why is this so dang sweet?
My second thought: am I actually just drinking straight-up creamer?
My third thought: a lot of people are going to say this is way too sweet.
My fourth thought: but I’m not one of them, BRING IT ON!
Suffice it to say, this latest offering from my favorite red-headed fast food mascot (sorry, Ronald McDonald) comes on strong. It also comes in three flavors; I chose vanilla (it felt like the most neutral for a review… and also happens to be my favorite), but if you prefer chocolate or caramel, those are also available.
My knee-jerk comparison to coffee creamer makes sense, as this beverage consists of cold-brewed coffee with something that Wendy’s identifies as “Frosty creamer” (which, according to its site, is creamer that is actually made from a Frosty), plus a syrup in the aforementioned flavor of your choice, served over ice.
If you’re unfamiliar with cold brew, it’s coffee made from grounds steeped in cold water for an extended period of time. In addition to being known for being more caffeinated than regularly brewed coffee, cold brew has a reputation for tasting particularly smooth, and that’s definitely a word that I would use to describe this drink. On top of that rich, goes-down-easy taste, the texture was noticeably thick and creamy, which made for an indulgent feel. I drank mine late enough in the day that it was more of a dessert than a pick-me-up, and that feels appropriate for something so decadent (although perhaps not the best for my sleep schedule).
The only thing this coffee was missing for me was, well, tasting like coffee. I’ve had cold brew before, and while it is usually on the mellow side, I’ve still always been able to notice that characteristic bitterness lurking beneath the surface. Here, though, even as someone who typically can’t hide the acrid flavor even when it’s masked by generous quantities of milk and cream, I genuinely couldn’t detect any hint whatsoever.
I suspected that maybe my first few sips were just ridiculously sweet because I was getting all the creamer at once, and yes, the sweetness of my subsequent sips was definitely less intense (though definitely still there)… but those sips still tasted more like milk than coffee. While remaining velvety in texture, they also seemed a little watered down flavor-wise. Honestly, if I’d tried this drink past the initial sips while blindfolded, I probably would have guessed it was milk tea after the ice had started to melt.
As I’ve stressed a few times by now, that pronounced sweetness was a positive for me, but I’m aware that many would find it overpowering or just not complex enough (and I admit that I also wish there was a tad more to the flavor profile than “overly sweet, then milky/watery”). So if you’re a coffee purist or just wary of a sugar rush, I’d advise sticking with just regular cold brew or a regular Frosty (or heck, both separately). But if, like me, every one of your teeth is a sweet tooth, you’ll likely find this combination crave-worthy, even if somewhat simple.
Purchased Price: $2.17
Rating: 7 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: 170 calories, 3 grams of fat, 10 milligrams of cholesterol, 70 milligrams of sodium, 31 grams of total carbohydrates, 0 grams of fiber, 27 grams of sugar, and 4 grams of protein.