Is the fall Starbucks menu overrated?

Finally it’s back. Many seem to be anticipating their favorite time of the year. Fall marks back to school season, football games, and of course, the fall Starbucks menu. I’ve always wondered what the hype about it was, so this year I decided to try it out myself. I had high hopes going into this. Many claim it is their favorite thing about fall; being able to taste these new featured drinks that began selling on August 30. The clock was ticking and I was growing impatient… is the Starbucks Fall menu really all that?

My first order was the Pumpkin and Pepita loaf. It’s a very compact and spongy loaf with lots of moisture keeping it all well balanced. I thought it would be sweeter than it actually was. The pepitas on top add a crunch to your bite. Compared to the other fall pastries, the loaf tends to focus more on the aroma of pumpkin to create the perfect bite of autumn. 

I had never really heard about the Pumpkin Scone but something about it made me want to know if it was really worth the wait. It had similar spices as the pumpkin loaf and the icing on top was not too sweet making it a perfect balance. I would recommend eating it with a coffee on the side to balance this sweet  mouth watering pastry with the bitterness of a coffee. 

Senior Gigi Maki poses with her fresh pumpkin loaf on September 27. (Clara Sanjuan)

As I walked towards the Starbucks entrance located in Southfield, the first thing that caught my eye was the huge sign flashing images of the newest drinks. 

The one and only pumpkin spice latte is the first drink that drew my attention. I’ve heard people order it hot and iced. Since it was still warm outside,I decided I would go with the iced version and taste my friend Gigi Maki’s hot version.The sweet taste of pumpkin makes this drink feel like you are slurping straight out of a candle. I decided to compare it to the hot version and quickly realized that the ice makes the drink less flavorful and more watery. 

The Pumpkin Spice Latte, the face of the fall menu, topped with whipped cream resting on the counter of the Southfield Starbucks location. (Clara Sanjuan)

“I love how it’s not just coffee, it has the taste of pumpkin, cinnamon, cloves and even nutmeg all in one drink, the perfect fall combination if you ask me,”  Maki said, taking a sip out of her warm cup. 

The steamed milk and espresso make the spices more flavorful altogether. Overall I came to the conclusion of why this drink is so popular; because it tastes exactly like the season. 

The perfect side to a coffee would have to be the pumpkin cream cheese muffin in my opinion. This muffin keeps making a reappearance everywhere I go. It’s also topped with toasted pumpkin seeds but unlike the pumpkin loaf, this muffin is less spiced and more enjoyable to eat. Although the texture of the cream cheese, muffin and seeds might be a weird combination for some, I personally enjoy the softness of the cream cheese altogether with the moisture of the muffin and the crunch of the pepitas. 

The Apple crisp oat milk macchiato has been introduced this year for dairy-free customers. The oatmilk with the slight flavor of apple work together to make the drink.

Southfield location Starbucks employee Marcia Bell says the Apple Crisp Oat Milk Macchiato is a perfect treat for those with a sweet tooth.

“It was a lot sweeter than it was last year and you can still taste a little bit of the spice in it. With the coffee it tastes much better,” Bell said.

The pumpkin cream cold brew is also dedicated to the coffee lovers. However, the pumpkin cream cold foam on the top gives each sip a little more sweetness.The texture might play a role when deciding on this drink, but it’s my favorite part.The cold foam melts in your mouth after each sip giving it a nice balance to your coffee.It’s not too spiced, I would even say it tastes like pumpkin and vanilla together. 

Although the starbucks fall menu only lasts a couple months I highly recommend enjoying some of these fall specials whenever you get the chance. It makes for a great fall treat or pick me up as the leaves begin to change.

Pumpkin Cold Foam rests on the surface of this iced Pumpkin Spice Latte that was made at the Southfield Target. The cold foam adds a different texture and spice to the drink.