What is the new Starbucks Frappuccino?

Photo credit: Flickr/blackheartking.com (xtyler)
Photo credit: Flickr/blackheartking.com (xtyler)

Earlier this season Starbucks rolled out their new Frappuccino, the “However-You-Want-It Frappuccino,” which is designed to give you even more options than before.

Previously you could always ask the baristas to prepare your Frappuccino a special way, of course. (I always asked them to add an extra shot of espresso to give it a little more bite, depth of flavor, and caffeine.)

However, there were some things that you couldn’t change. For example, the lactose intolerant could not request a soy option. Every Frappuccino started with one of three bases: Crème, Light, or Regular, and you had to work from there.

Now you can order a Frappuccino in the same way that you order any other Starbucks espresso drink. For example, you can start with soy milk, and ask for decaf coffee, any of a number of syrup flavors (like raspberry, caramel, and of course chocolate), and customize your toppings.

In addition to being able to use soy, one of the other real benefits of the new system is a truly light offering. You can get a Frappuccino made with skim milk, sugar-free syrups, and a base that is made with a blend of stevia and water for sweetness.

Starbucks has also removed high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) from its product line. There wasn’t very much HFCS in there to begin with – it came in the syrup for the Strawberries and Crème flavor – but for those who don’t like it, it’s gone now.

Personally I was always pretty happy with the Frappuccino I always bought – a medium Java Chip with an extra shot of espresso. That’s still what I order. Don’t worry, the baristas know what you mean!

New Starbucks Frappuccino Review

The real question is, how does it taste? I had one recently after not having ordered one for many months. I’ll be honest with you, I couldn’t tell the difference. Was it perhaps a little sweeter than the previous blend? Many people say that it is.

One difficulty in making a direct comparison is the bewildering variety of Frappuccinos which are possible now. One source I found said “thousands,” which seems entirely possible to me.

Speaking of “thousands,” I keep looking around in vain for some kind of menu or sandwich board with suggestions. I have real problems with option paralysis, which is why I’m still ordering the same darned Frappuccino that I always did. I hope that Starbucks starts setting out menu suggestions, because navigating the sea of new options is more than a little daunting!

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