Rating Starbucks’ holiday drinks


Photo Credit: Kendall Clarida

Starbucks has a wide assortment of new festive drinks and treats for the holiday season.

Kendall Clarida, Supervising Editor

 It’s finally here—Starbucks holiday treats are back as of November 3. Personally, this is something I anticipate all year, and I have already tried every single new holiday item. 

We all know Starbucks can really take a toll on your bank account, especially when they come out with their delicious seasonal items. In order to save you some money, I’ll give you the rundown of what holiday items I think are worth it. 

Let’s start with the new holiday drinks.

Peppermint Mocha

The Peppermint Mocha has the perfect balance of chocolate and candy cane flavor. (Photo from Starbucks.com)

The Peppermint Mocha is a classic holiday drink at Starbucks. You can get the drink iced or hot, and the strong peppermint flavor definitely screams Christmas. Joy Harfouche ‘23 loves this holiday drink: “The peppermint mocha is a classic and one of my favorite drinks. I love that it’s versatile because the frap and latte are equally delicious.” The peppermint can definitely seem a little overwhelming, but I’ll still give it an 8/10 

Caramel Brulée Latte

The Caramel Brulée Latte might quite literally be the best drink I have ever had. It’s perfectly sweet, loaded with caramel flavor, and is the perfect drink for the Christmas season. Emma Fredman ‘23 also loves the Caramel Brûlée latte: “Caramel Brulée is my favorite holiday drink because it perfectly combines a sweet caramel taste with a nutty undertone.” This latte deserves a 10/10. 

Chestnut Praline Latte

The delicious Chestnut Praline Latte definitely puts me in the holiday spirit. (Photo from Starbucks.com)

The Chestnut Praline Latte isn’t too sweet but is still a delicious drink. The flavor of caramelized chestnuts and spices makes me want to curl up next to a fire and watch Christmas movies. I still like the Caramel Brulée better, but I will give the latte a 7/10.

Sugar Cookie Almondmilk Latte

The Sugar Cookie Almondmilk Latte is a newer holiday drink and is their first nondairy seasonal drink. A lot of people rave about this drink; personally, I wouldn’t drop everything to get it. If I had to drink it, I would add sweet cream cold foam for a little extra sweetness. I think the almond milk sets me off and oat milk would be a better option. Sophia Harvey ‘23 thinks there are better drinks for the holiday season: “There should not be crunch in my coffee,” in reference to the red and green holiday sprinkles the latte is topped with. I’ll give it a 5/10. 

Toasted White Chocolate Mocha

The Toasted White Chocolate Mocha is a classic. Starbucks has the White Chocolate Mocha all year long, but the holiday edition has “holiday sugar sparkles and crispy white pearls” for that extra festive touch. There’s nothing too out of the ordinary for this drink, but it’s definitely a great go-to, so I’ll rate it a 6/10. 

Irish Cream Cold Brew

The Irish Cream Cold Brew is great for true coffee lovers. (Photo from Starbucks.com)

The Irish Cream Cold Brew has a perfect blend of coffee and sweet flavors. This seasonal beverage is perfect for those who love the bitter taste of coffee. Avid coffee drinker and senior Chloe McNamara said, “I love the Irish Cream Cold Brew. It’s the perfect combination of sweet, bitter, and smooth.” I prefer sweeter drinks, so I’ll give it a 6/10. 

Next up are the new holiday treats.

Chocolate Pistachio Swirl

Starbucks came out with a new holiday treat this year—the Chocolate Pistachio Swirl. It’s a cinnamon roll with a chocolate and nutty twist. As someone that is an avid cinnamon roll advocate, I was more than excited to try it. Unfortunately, I also despise pistachios so that kind of ruined it for me. I’ll give it a 3/10 solely for the pistachios. 

Cranberry Bliss Bar

The Cranberry Bliss Bar is a great on-the-go snack that will instantly put you in the holiday mood. With a mix of berry, cream cheese, and orange flavors, it is a unique treat that will leave you wanting more. I’ll give it a 7/10. 

Snowman Cookie

Starbucks’ Snowman Cookie is a classic sugar cookie with a cute snowman design. The festive and adorable cookie definitely puts me in the holiday spirit. I would give it a solid 7/10. It’s nothing special. 

Reindeer Cake Pop

All Starbucks cake pops heal me, but the new reindeer one brings me unmeasurable joy. (Photo Credit: Emma Fredman)

I love Starbucks cake pops. The Birthday Cake pop is my ultimate favorite, but the festive reindeer brings me so much joy. The new cake pop pairs perfectly with one of the new holiday drinks and makes me want to watch Christmas lights. I would rate the new Reindeer Cake Pop a 10/10. It is perfection.

Sugar Plum Cheese Danish

I am a fan of Starbucks’ year-round cheese danish. I was so excited to find out a new holiday version would be coming out, but I’m sad to say I was a little disappointed. 

Senior Emma Fredman also feels like Starbucks’ new danish was lacking: “I am an avid danish buyer, eater, and maker. I was very excited to try the holiday danish but grossly disappointed as the puff pastry was too thick and the cheese filling and jam were an awful combo.”

It wasn’t anything terrible, but I would rather just get the normal cheese danish. The mixture of jam and cheese was off-putting. I would give it a 6/10. 

I strongly encourage you to stop by your local Starbucks and use this as your guide if you’re stuck on what to get off the incredible holiday menu.