[Review] Starbucks’s Holiday Menu returns with fun fan-favorites for this winter



Festive flavors. Starbucks recently released their new holiday menu. Many new items are offered for a limited time, including the Iced Peppermint Mocha, the Toasted White Chocolate Mocha Frappuccino and the Sugar Cookie Almond Milk Latte.

Sasha Lechtenstein and Dana Masri

While many people anticipate presents and shopping sales during the holidays, it is the limited edition holiday drinks that bring the most joy during this time of year. The biggest provider to these drink-a-holics is none other than Starbucks. In fact, in 2021, Starbucks’ overall sales rose 10% the week the Pumpkin Spice Latte was released. In order to honor this season’s wonderful holiday drink lineup, here is a review of some of this year’s top drinks: the Iced Peppermint Mocha, the Toasted White Chocolate Mocha Frappuccino and the Sugar Cookie Almond Milk Latte.

The first thing that comes to mind when one imagines the perfect holiday drink is peppermint. The Iced Peppermint Mocha is a simple yet delicious combination of hot chocolate and coffee with a Christmas twist. After taking my first sip, I noticed that it tastes just as chocolatey as it looks. This drink has been a fan-favorite for the twenty years since its initial release in 2002. Topped with whipped cream and chocolate shavings, it is the perfect cold drink for celebrating the holidays in sunny Florida. If you are not a fan of iced coffee, do not worry: this drink is also served frozen in the Peppermint Mocha Frappuccino, or as a hot Peppermint Mocha.

Not a fan of peppermint? No worries, Starbucks has it covered with their Toasted White Chocolate Mocha Frappuccino. Sister to the Iced Peppermint Mocha, this is an equally festive version with no peppermint taste. This frappuccino is coffee-colored, topped with whipped cream and holiday sugar sparkles. When I tried this drink, I got a little taste of coffee, but it definitely was not as strong as the Iced Peppermint Mocha. It is also much sweeter. The Toasted White Chocolate Mocha Frappuccino is perfect for somebody who is craving that crisp holiday feel in frozen form. This drink is great for anyone who likes their coffee on the sweeter side.

Although it is loved by most, the Sugar Cookie Almond Milk Latte was not my personal favorite. I found it to be extremely sweet with nothing to balance it out. The presentation of the latte was still nice and festive, with almond milk foam and red and green sprinkles to top it. The Sugar Cookie Almond Milk Latte would be a perfect drink for someone who enjoys very sweet hot coffee. Starbucks’s Sugar Cookie syrup is their newest holiday flavor, and it has definitely grown into one of the more popular options. This fun flavor comes in the form of a hot latte, an iced latte, a coffee frappuccino or a cream frappuccino. Although I did not particularly like the Sugar Cookie Almond Milk Latte, I would definitely still be interested in trying the other drink forms.

Starbucks never misses with their seasonal holiday menu. People with a sweet tooth should definitely look into the Sugar Cookie flavored drinks, while someone looking for more of a coffee flavor should try either the Peppermint Mocha drinks or the Toasted White Chocolate Mocha ones, depending on where they stand with peppermint flavor. Starbucks’s holiday menu features many more holiday drinks in addition to the three we reviewed, but overall, ordering these drinks is the perfect way to get into the holiday spirit just in time for winter break.