A wise woman once wrote (er, tweeted?) that there’s nothing like an early aughts Starbucks during the holiday season: the warm glow of red decor, the hot beverages that help you shed off the cold, the seasonal CD. But a lot has changed since then. Those CDs are now Spotify playlists and we’ve grown so hardcore we take our beverages iced straight through the winter months. In fact, cold beverage sales account for the greatest share of Starbucks’ sales. And Starbucks has taken note of this preference.
It all starts with Starbucks Cold Brew, with the smooth vanilla notes you know and love (remember the Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew?), topped with vanilla sweet cream cold foam, which has been a fixture on the menu for some time now. The novelty here is the Irish Cream syrup, which combines vanilla and cocoa flavors.
As someone who is not much of a cold beverage fan, I went to the tasting curious, and I left raving about how good this drink is to anyone who’d listen. I don’t drink dairy, but I have been counting down the days until I can get this in stores because it’s that good. A note to the Instagram-inclined: there’s something about the cold cream that makes it form rich caramel ribbons in the dark cold brew that seem to last for hours, which makes for a prolonged photo-op.