[Review] Christmas in July – Starbucks introduces new drink for summer.


Julia Landy

The Starbucks Chocolate Java Mint Frappuccino, depicted here with light whipped cream, serves as a cool and refreshing treat to combat the summer heat. It was introduced on May 9 and will be available throughout the entire Summer.

Julia Landy, Editor-in-Chief, Graphics & Design Editor

The new Chocolate Java Mint Frappuccino at Starbucks truly feels like Christmas in July. With cool hints of mint complemented by the rich taste of Java, the drink is both refreshing and vitalizing.

Starbucks is famous for its annual holiday drink lineup, which includes its popular Peppermint Mocha Frappuccino. The arrival of the new Chocolate Java Mint Frappuccino puts a summer spin on a seasonal classic. The chocolate and mint combo gives a familiar flavor with an invigorating twist of cookie crumbs and frappuccino chips. Essentially, it is a combination of the Java Chip Frappuccino with toppings that resemble the mocha cookie crumble frappuccino and flavors of the peppermint mocha, my personal all-time favorite.

Although I do not typically go for frappuccinos on my Starbucks runs, I had to give this limited-time option a try. While I did not have high expectations, I was immediately impressed by the drink’s sparkling appearance. With speckles of green mixed in with the delicious Oreo toppings, the first sip was much anticipated.

Initially, it had a sweet, minty flavor that tasted much like my holiday favorite; but, rather than the smooth, comforting taste of mocha, the mint was complemented by an exciting, rejuvenating java flavor.

The mint cookie crumble topping, while it was very similar to the mocha cookie crumble topping that is served with their Mocha Cookie Crumble Frappuccino, had a new and exciting flavor that reminded me of a thin mint Oreo. The mocha drizzle was the cherry on top of this masterpiece, taking the drink from a coffee concoction to a rejuvenating dessert.

If anything, I would say that the one and only pitfall that the Chocolate Java Mint Frappuccino has is that it is slightly too similar to past drinks. While I personally enjoyed this, as the drinks it resembles all fall on my list of favorites, I feel that it may have been a better idea for them to create a drink that is more unique from their other products to boost excitement for it. Although, they did somewhat make up for this by adding a pretty splash of green color to make it appear unique.

The most exciting part about the arrival of the new menu item is not the drink itself, but rather the flavor lineup it brings with it. Typically, when Starbucks invites a new beverage to its product line, it includes several variations: a frappuccino, a latte, a cold brew or a hot drink variation. This time, much unlike others, the company chose just to sell the frappuccino as a stand-alone product.

As any Starbucks aficionado could tell you, the coffee shop is famous for its highly customizable beverage lineup, which has even inspired entire Instagram accounts, blog pages and websites solely dedicated just to different Starbucks flavor combinations. The Chocolate Java Mint Frappuccino is made with white chocolate mint syrup and chocolate mint sprinkles, which can be added to any drink. These syrups allow customers to design a wide variety of drinks, including a white chocolate mint iced or hot latte, or perhaps using this syrup as a thrilling addition to a white chocolate mocha or vanilla latte.

Along with this new product, the White Chocolate Macadamia Cream Cold Brew arrived, which is made with macadamia syrup and is topped with white chocolate macadamia cold foam for an equally refreshing taste. These syrups could also potentially be combined with the mint syrup for a hearty, refreshing shaken espresso with white chocolate mint syrup and macadamia cold foam. The possibilities are truly endless.

The syrup hype aside, I am going to have to give the drink alone a solid 8/10. Although the drink itself was absolutely perfect in my eyes, the only reason for it not to score perfectly would be that it was slightly too similar to many of their other beverages, failing to provide innovation.