EVERYBODY has heard of the pumpkin spice latte – but have you ever tried a ‘pumpkin spice’ cold brew coffee?
That’s the concoction to hit Starbucks coffee shops in the UK – and I was one of the Brits to try it along with the rest of the coffee chains autumn menu.
The new ‘hipster’ drink is available from September 1 across Starbucks’ 560 stores in the UK, along with the popular pumpkin spice latte.
The drink was first launched in the US and due to the popularity with customers it’s coming to the UK.
Cold brew drinks are one of the latest coffee trends to hit the UK, with experts saying they are aimed at younger audiences who are on the lookout for new versions of iced drinks.
Making cold brew is different to normal coffee.
It’s made by steeping, or soaking, coffee in room-temperature water for anywhere up to 20 hours.
You then strain out the grounds and chill it before serving it over ice or diluted with water, which makes it a smoother and more mellow blend.
Starbucks’ cold brew costs from £3.80, depending on the size, and was, in my opinion, better than expected.
Usually, I find these types of drinks far too sweet and combined with the caffeine, I’m left buzzing and then crashing a few hours later.
But the cold brew just hit the spot.
It had a small kick of spice with cool cream on top, with a soft velvety flavour.
Whether I liked it enough to justify forking out £3.80 though, I’m not too sure.
Rivals Pret a Manger and Costa both sell their own versions. Costa’s small size costs £3.05 while Pret’s 250ml can is £2.45.
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Starbucks is also launching eight other items, as part of its autumn menu.
These include egg bits, a mushroom and egg muffin, American salami focaccia and fiery no chicken wrap.
It’s the first time Starbucks UK has stocked a plant-based chicken alternative as well.
The triple cheese egg bites came with ham inside and tasted as you would expect – light, fluffy and well-seasoned.
They’re bitesize as well, so perfect for a quick snack on the go.
But they were quite expensive – coming in at £3.20.
Meanwhile, the mushroom and egg muffin, again perfect for vegetarians, was pretty tasty.
The egg was well-seasoned, the mushrooms were tasty and the béchamel sauce binded everything together really nicely.
But the muffin bun was a bit dry, even with the sauce in there.
It costs £3.40, which isn’t unreasonable in my opinion.
The American deli meats focaccia had nice flavours and the herbs on top of the bread added a nice kick.
But overall it was a bit dry for me again. And at £4.59, quite expensive too when you can get a Tesco meal deal for £3.50.
Next up was the fiery no-chicken wrap, which out of all the savoury snacks was probably my favourite and cost £4.20.
I wasn’t expecting to like it as much as I did, and usually find chicken substitutes not quite up to scratch compared to the real thing.
But the wrap was really tasty, juicy and full of flavour.
On the sweet side of things, I tried the toffee and apple muffin, which was £2.19.
It was what you’d expect, light and fluffy, and the custard vanilla bean frosting and caramel drizzle was a tasty addition.
And the espresso roast blondie was nice enough.
Despite having a penchant for coffee, I’ve never been a fan of coffee cake per se, but Starbucks’ offering was ok.
The icing layer on the top was a bit too thick for me though.
While the pumpkin cream cold brew was well-balanced and not too sweet, I’d probably still be likely to go for my regular flat white if I took a trip to Starbucks.
A flat white will only set you back £3.15 in central London whereas the cold brew is £3.80.
That’s probably because the cold brew has all the extra shots and syrup included.
But even still, I didn’t like it enough that I’d make it my regular order.
Especially going into the autumn, I’d be more inclined towards grabbing a warm drink.
On the food, it was what I expected and was fresh, well-seasoned and tasty, but could have been improved in some ways.
The fiery no chicken wrap was the best out of the bunch and is something I’d definitely go back for.
Greggs released its pumpkin spiced latte yesterday, and even though it’s 25p more than before, is £2.20 in comparison.