Starbucks VIA Ready Brew Pumpkin Spice Latte, flavor review

Starbucks Starbucks President, Howard Schultz states,"we believe you should never be without great coffee". Amen. I am a faithful Starbucks customer. I know when I order a coffee at a Starbucks store, it will always taste amazing. Starbucks unflavored coffee VIA are excellent, the perfect accompaniment on a camping trip; where there is no coffee maker. Flavored coffee VIA is not always so  perfect. Balance is difficult to achieve. Often the flavors pop out, taste artificial and are not balanced. Milk fat flavor Pumpkin Spice latte (PSL) is no exception. There are way too many milk fat notes (capric acid, caprylic acid,lauric acid) popping out of this ready brew mix. Drinking the VIA Pumpkin Spice latte, leaves sour, fatty milk notes … [Read more...]

Starbuck’s Via Cool Lime Refreshers, flavor review

Starbucks, you stole my idea!  Thank you, because I love your new Cool Lime Refreshers™. Seven years of my life were spent blending mint with all sorts of flavor combinations. My favorite mint variety to blend with fruity notes is Native Spearmint (Mentha spicata): herbal, green leafy, tea like and dry. Scotch Spearmint(Mentha gracilis) is preferred for chewing gum: creamy, green and buttery. Truthfully, I never perfected the mint blend: Starbucks did with their Refreshers™ Cool Lime. Some successful flavors I made were pear mint, melon mint and key lime mint. If I were to mix all these flavors, I'd have Cool Lime Refreshers™; perfection!  The Starbucks Via box claims Cool Lime combines kaffir lime, hints of mint, … [Read more...]

Starbucks Refreshers, Sparkling Energy Beverage with green coffee extract, flavor review

Starbucks RefreshersLike most moms, I survived the new baby/full-time work phase with lots of caffeine. Coffee is my beverage of choice for "energy". Energy drinks are popular and most flavor chemists have made flavors and energy blends for these beverages. In early 2000, I copied Red Bull (TM) flavor for a successful bar drink. My flavor memory of Red Bull (TM) was cherry cough syrup. It is shocking to find out that Red Bull and Vodka is served at bars (combination of upper and downer drugs), but maybe not so different than the Cola mixed drinks I had become accustomed to. Through my career, I've created other flavors for energy drinks: passionfruit, orange, and melon; then I moved on to confection flavors. On a recent trip to Target, … [Read more...]

McDonald’s Peppermint Mocha review

I visit McDonalds about once a week in the colder months. It's a great place to take my daughter to play while I enjoy some coffee and relax. If Starbucks had a play land, I'd be there in a heartbeat, but they don't. The coffee at Starbucks is hands down way better than McDonalds; but McDonalds does a great job providing coffee options to their customers. If you buy a McCafe drink at McDonalds, you will not get to choose decaf, sugar-free, an extra espresso shot or light. McDonalds McCafe drinks come in big food service pouches (large bags) that are inserted into a dispensing machine. I found this out when I ordered a Peppermint Mocha and realized my order was the first order of the season. The crew had to go get the "new bag" from … [Read more...]