Starbucks' New Juniper Latte Will Get You Into the Holiday Spirit

When I received a text from a friend that said "Starbucks' new juniper latte... thoughts?" I was shocked. How could such a corporate, basic institution give us a drink so... fascinating? I had to know more.

Luckily, I was ten feet away from a Starbucks at the time that I opened the message. I just HAD to scoot over and try it for myself.

The juniper latte is made with espresso, steamed milk and a juniper-infused simple syrup, then topped with a foamed milk and dusted with a pine and citrus sugar. Doesn't that sound irresistible?

A reply from another friend was certainly skeptical about the latte, saying, "Am I drinking a tree?" I decided to find out.

After the monstrous line has ended, I waited patiently for my drink and picked it up as fast as I could when it was prepared and popped up at the end of the coffee bar (partially out of a dire need for caffeine and partially out of excitement.) 

As one would expect, it appeared just like any other latte. Whatever fragrance that I expected there to be was masked by the rich espresso. I took a long, hard sip and at first, all I tasted was the frothy milk and espresso, which was mildly disappointing. 

All of a sudden, while the drink was still pressed to my lips... It happened. I tasted a rich and bright flavor, and it was herbal almost citrus-y. The pine flavor hit soon after, immediately taking me back to Christmas at my Grandma's house surrounded by snow-covered pines.

I was instantly warmed by the memory and of course, the latte itself.

The juniper syrup was surprisingly not too powerful or soapy at all, and the citrus flavor was able to shine through and brighten up the taste of the drink.

The citrus and pine sugar was lovely, and I would like to put it on everything I whip up in the kitchen this winter. Maybe I can buy it in bulk...? I'll ask for an pound or two next time I stop in.

I genuinely hope it people aren't overwhelmed by the flavor profile of this latte as it is delicious and nostalgic... what's not to love?

We can only hope that it becomes a Starbucks holiday tradition just like the beloved peppermint mocha.

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