REVIEW: Starbucks Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew

Starbucks Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew

What is the Starbucks Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew?

A cousin to the beloved Pumpkin Spice Latte, the new Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew features Starbucks’ tried-and-true Cold Brew with vanilla sweet cream and a pumpkin-flavored cold foam with pumpkin spice on top.

How is it?

I fully embrace pumpkin spice season, even when it makes its debut in August. And OH MY GOSH, you guys, this Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew is a real winner. I *might* even break up with the PSL this year and stick with the Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew. It’s that good.

Starbucks Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew 2

The biggest takeaway from the Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew is that it’s not as sweet as the PSL. It tasted like a piece of pumpkin pie – just enough of a hint of flavor without an artificial taste. The Cold Brew itself, sweetened with vanilla syrup, is smooth and easy to drink. And while I typically have to be in the mood for Cold Foam, I LOVED this one. I liked that it stayed nicely as the top layer without sinking too much into the Cold Brew.

One thing to note, I tried this drink twice. Once I got it with the straw-less lid. The second day, my Starbucks was out of those, so I got lid and straw. While it didn’t affect the flavor too much, I do prefer drinking it out of the straw-less lid because you get equal parts Cold Brew and Cold Foam.

A grande packs a decent caffeine punch at roughly 185 milligrams, so it got me through my day, both productive and excited about wearing scarves again soon.

Is there anything else I need to know?

Points to my mom for doing the recon on this one: The Cold Brew already has the vanilla syrup added in, so you can’t customize with sugar-free vanilla. Embrace the full sugar, my friends – it’s worth it.

Conclusion:

When can I go back and get another?

Purchased Price: $4.45
Size: Grande
Purchased at: Starbucks
Rating: 10 out of 10
Nutrition Facts:: (Grande) 250 calories, 12 grams of total fat, 8 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 40 milligrams of cholesterol, 55 milligrams of sodium, 31 grams of total carbohydrates, 0 grams of dietary fiber, 31 grams of total sugars, 3 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Dunkin’ Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Signature Latte

Dunkin Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Signature Latte

What is the Dunkin’ Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Signature Latte?

Well, if you’re not quite ready to jump Ugg first into Pumpkin Spice Season, Dunkin’ has a tweak on the old recipe that basically tastes like pumpkin spice!

How is it?

Ok, in fairness, “Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin” is probably better than that boring glory hog pumpkin spice.

I’m not positive what Dunkin’s recipe is, but a quick search indicates that cinnamon is usually the predominant spice used in pumpkin spice. I don’t think that’s new information to anyone with taste buds, but this latte seems like someone screwed up the pumpkin spice recipe and a happy accident occurred.

Test Kitchen chef, Ralph (I’m naming him Ralph), accidentally threw double the cinnamon in a pumpkin spice batch and Dunkin’ decided it tasted good enough to make the menu.

Cinnamon sugar is delicious, so why wouldn’t you want more of that in your coffee?

Is there anything else you need to know?

Despite an abundance of cinnamon sugar, it wasn’t as sweet as expected. Maybe I lucked out with a good batch, but I expected this to be cloying and over the top. The inclusion of more cinnamon helped mellow out the pumpkin flavor that Dunkin’ sometimes ramps up to ten.

Dunkin Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Signature Latte Topping

The whipped cream sprinkled with cinnamon was a nice touch, but eat it first, or it will sink to the ice cubes. Whipped topping is definitely better suited for blended drinks.

I’m an iced coffee guy, but I have no doubt this will be a perfect hot coffee flavor too. I’m gonna try that on the first truly cold September morning.

Conclusion:

Dunkin Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Signature Latte Fun in the Sun

Despite the “fun in the sun” cup, this was the first moment I really felt like fall – or “autumn” for you pretentious readers – was about to smack me in the face.

If this drink proves anything, it’s that pumpkin and cinnamon are a winning combo. We might not even need all those other spices. Thanks, Ralph!

Purchased Price: $3.29
Size: Small
Rating: 8 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: 310 calories, 100 calories from fat, 11 grams of fat, 7 grams of sat fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 35 mg of cholesterol, 115 milligrams of sodium, 42 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of fiber, 36 grams of sugar, and 7 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Dunkin’ Peeps Marshmallow Flavored Coffee

Dunkin Peeps Marshmallow Flavored Coffee

What is the Dunkin’ Peeps Marshmallow Flavored Coffee?

Well folks, it appears the Easter season is upon us.

I mean, why else would Dunkin’ be selling Marshmallow Peeps flavored coffees?

How is it?

I fully expected the sweetness to be out of control, but I’m happy to report my worries were overstated. I guess I figured a syrup created to mimic a sugar dusted marshmallow would be overwhelming, but I really enjoyed the flavor.

Dunkin Peeps Marshmallow Flavored Coffee Top

Sure the “drop” of milk I requested (which was more like a cup) probably diluted the sweetness a bit, but if that’s the case, props to the Barista for the happy accident. (Are they called Baristas at Dunkin’?)

I picked up a pack of Peeps to compare the flavor, and I’ll say they got it about 75% there.

I wouldn’t necessarily say the coffee screamed “PEEPS,” but it definitely tasted like marshmallow and vanilla. I might even say I liked it a bit more in drink form than the sand and memory foam, I mean, sugar and marshmallow form of a standard Peep.

Is there anything else you need to know?

Dunkin Peeps Marshmallow Flavored Coffee Topped with a Peeps Chick

I floated a Peeps chick in the coffee just for the hell of it, and it added a whole lot of nothing to the experience.

The aforementioned Barista (?!) made me take a sip of the coffee in front of her and report if I liked it. I toyed with spitting it out in disgust, but just simply said, “it’s good” and pretended it wasn’t an odd request.

I skipped the Peeps donut because it just looked like standard sprinkled fare with a Peeps chick on top.

Conclusion:

This is a winner, and I’ll probably get it at least one more time this month.

It wouldn’t shock me if Dunkin’ just rebranded the flavor syrup as generic “marshmallow” and snuck it on their full-time menu once Spring has come and gone. It would definitely be a worthy addition to its flavor swirl lineup.

Purchased Price: $2.65
Size: Small
Rating: 8 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (Small without dairy) 120 calories, 0 grams of fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 45 milligrams of sodium, 28 grams of carbohydrates, 0 grams of fiber, 25 grams of sugar, 2 grams of protein, and 178 milligrams of caffeine.

REVIEW: Dunkin’ Chocolate Cherry Cold Brew

Dunkin Chocolate Cherry Cold Brew

What is the Dunkin’ Chocolate Cherry Cold Brew?

It’s Dunkin’s ultra-smooth, full-bodied cold brew coffee with chocolate and cherry-flavored syrup. It’s available for a limited time.

How is it?

Dunkin Chocolate Cherry Cold Brew Top

Its cherry flavor reminds me of what’s in flavored colas. As someone who adores cherry colas, I find the artificial fruitiness to be pleasant. But the cherry is totally chocblocking the chocolate flavor. Sometimes it’s there, but faint, and other times I can’t taste it. Whatever flavor there is, it doesn’t overwhelm the cold brew coffee, and it’s not overly sweet. Even though I’m disappointed it’s cherry-heavy, I still enjoyed drinking it.

Is there anything else you need to know?

Dunkin Chocolate Cherry Cold Brew at 715 PM

I drank this a little after 7:15 p.m. and a small Dunkin’ Cold Brew has 174 milligrams of caffeine. So I guess I’ll be watching The Late Show, then the Late Late Show, then whatever infomercials that follow them, and then the morning news.

At home, I added a splash of sweet cream-flavored creamer, which enhanced the fruitiness and stomped out whatever chocolate flavor there was.

Throughout April, Dunkin’ customers can get this flavor, or any Cold Brew flavor, as part of a special offer of any medium-sized Cold Brew for only $2 from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.

Conclusion:

Dunkin’s Chocolate Cherry Cold Brew is a decent tasting beverage, but I do wish the chocolate stood out more. It’s definitely worth a try if you can get it for just $2.

Purchased Price: $3.49
Size: Small
Rating: 6 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (Small w/o cream) 70 calories, 0 grams of fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 25 milligrams of sodium, 17 grams of carbohydrates, 16 grams of sugar, and 0 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Starbucks Tripleshot Energy Coffee Beverages

Starbucks Tripleshot Energy Coffee Beverage

What are Starbucks Tripleshot Energy Coffee Beverages?

They are extra-strength versions of Starbucks’ Doubleshot Energy canned beverages. While the Doubleshots have 145 milligrams of caffeine per can, the Tripleshots have 225 milligrams. There are three flavors: Caramel, French Vanilla, and Caffe Mocha.

This review covers the first two.

How are they?

If your taste buds are familiar with Starbucks’ Doubleshot Energy or even Java Monster, then these will also be familiar to them. There’s enough cream, sugar, and flavoring in both to hide the coffee flavor and energy ingredients, like ginseng and guarana. So if you’re into sweet, dairy coffee drinks, then you’ll enjoy these. I did.

But, maybe it’s just me, they’re not as flavorful as Starbucks’ Doubleshot canned beverages, which I drink regularly. The new beverages are sweet and creamy like their less caffeinated cousins, but the flavors don’t seem pop as much as the Doubleshots. Maybe to stuff more caffeine into each can, the flavor level needed to be affected.

Is there anything else you need to know?

Two hundred twenty-five milligrams of caffeine is a lot. To give you an idea of how much that is, it’s a little less than what’s in a Venti-sized Starbucks Iced Coffee. Here are more numbers: Most Java Monster flavors have 188 milligrams of caffeine per can.

Caramel, vanilla, and mocha are the usual staid varieties when it comes to coffee energy drinks. I wish one of the flavors wasn’t one of the usuals. Unicorn Tripleshot, perhaps?

I didn’t include a photo of the actual liquid because I figured if you’ve seen one canned coffee drink you’ve seen them all. Think dirty storm river water. Okay. Okay. You got me. I forgot to take photos.

Conclusion:

Again, if you’ve had other coffee energy drinks, these Starbucks Tripleshots will taste familiar to you. Getting an extra 80 milligrams of caffeine over Starbucks’ Doubleshots at roughly the same price is nice if you need the added energy because you were up all night watching YouTube videos about the Easter eggs in Marvel movie trailers or something like that.

Purchased Price: $2.78 each
Size: 15 fl. oz. cans
Purchased at: Walmart
Rating: 7 out of 10 (French Vanilla)
Rating: 7 out of 10 (Caramel)
Nutrition Facts: (1 can) French Vanilla – 210 calories, 3 grams of fat, 1.5 grams of saturated fat, 15 milligrams of cholesterol, 180 milligrams of sodium, 36 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of fiber, 29 grams of sugar, and 10 grams of protein. Caramel – 210 calories, 3 grams of fat, 1.5 grams of saturated fat, 15 milligrams of cholesterol, 200 milligrams of sodium, 36 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of fiber, 29 grams of sugar, and 10 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Starbucks Vanilla Almondmilk Frappuccino

Starbucks Vanilla Almondmilk Frappuccino

What is the Starbucks Vanilla Almondmilk Frappuccino?

Imagine a bottled Starbucks Frappuccino with, instead of reduced fat and skim milk, a liquid made from almonds that are treated as if someone is trying to extract top secret information from it. They’re drowned, chopped into tiny pieces, and then drowned again.

Besides this vanilla flavor, there’s also a mocha version.

How is it?

Full disclosure: I drink almond milk. More specifically, organic Silk Almondmilk from Costco that comes in a pack with three half-gallons, which I drink even though there’s a Silk’s Vanilla Soymilk multi-pack that’s cheaper and better tasting. I mention that to show I have no issues with the nut milk.

With that said, Starbucks’ Vanilla Almondmilk Frappuccino is something I wouldn’t buy again. At first, it’s decent coffee drink. But in the middle of every sip, a weird, acrid taste pops up in my mouth. It’s similar to what I experienced with Starbucks’ bottled Smoked Butterscotch Latte. It’s not so horrible that I’m spitting it out and pouring the rest down the drain, but the next time I’m looking for a non-dairy coffee drink, I’ll avoid this.

I’m not sure if it’s the nut milk that’s causing this or something else because the Smoked Butterscotch Latte doesn’t have almond milk and I also recently tried Starbucks’ Almondmilk Caffe Latte and Caffe Mocha which don’t have that acrid taste.

Is there anything else you need to know?

Because the almond milk tends to be thinner than cow milk or soy milk, I thought this would also be that way. But thanks to our friends carrageenan and cellulose gum, it’s as thick and creamy as regular bottled Frappuccino beverages.

Some of you astute readers might’ve noticed I’ve used two different spellings for almond milk. When used in product names, I’ll respect the one-word spelling, but I’m on Team #AlmondSpaceMilk and used the two-word spelling for all other instances. Eh, maybe I’m just a fuddy-duddy.

Conclusion:

Starbucks’ Vanilla Almondmilk Frappuccino has fewer calories and fat than its dairy version, but its flavor makes it my least favorite bottled nut milk coffee drink. Thankfully, there are better options from Starbucks.

Purchased Price: $2.89
Size: 13.7 fl. oz.
Purchased at: Target
Rating: 4 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (1 bottle) 180 calories, 5 grams of fat, 0 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 120 milligrams of sodium, 32 grams of carbohydrates, 3 grams of fiber, 28 grams of sugar, and 2 grams of protein.