Spicing it up

Bear Facts reviews the best Pumpkin Spice coffee drinks we love a-latte.


Photo by Photo used with permission of www.flickr.com

Pumpkin spice lattes are a staple in many students’ fall diets, but do they really own up to the taste? Sadly, the taste of the lattes were not as delicious as expected.

Annette Suk, Staff Writer

The cultural phenomenon of pumpkin spice lattes are back as fall officially kicks in. Pumpkin spice candles, food, lotion, and even chapstick make their return from the infamous pumpkin spice latte. But are these lattes worth the hype and your money?

The latte is currently the top-selling seasonal beverage in Starbucks, with more than 350 million drinks sold. To put it towards the test, we put the pumpkin spice lattes from Starbucks and Dunkin’ Donuts against each other to see if the drink is really a fall trend worth following.

Taste: Both were similar in the aspect that they did not taste like pumpkin. In fact, only the spice could clearly be tasted. Expecting the drinks to taste like pumpkin and spice, I was thoroughly disappointed after the first sip. However, the small taste of spice did radiant a fall-like vibe and does seem like a great fall drink.

If you cannot handle strong spices, Dunkin’ may not be the best place to drink the latte. The amount of spice and sugar was a lot stronger than Starbucks and personally, I found it more difficult to drink as I am not used to drinking coffee with spice in it. Starbucks had a lighter spice amount and it was a lot easier for me to finish the drink and enjoy the taste. The extra spice made it difficult to drink the entire cup.

Appearance: the Starbucks drink was more unique than the Dunkin’ Donuts. While Dunkin looked like an ordinary cup of coffee with cream and sugar, the Starbucks pumpkin spice latte had an orange cream-like substance at the top of the drink. Starbucks gave off a very fall-like aesthetic whereas Dunkin’ did not.

Price: However, for its price, Dunkin’ does not disappoint. Its cup is a lot bigger than Starbucks and has enough liquid to last a person longer than Starbucks. Comparing a small Dunkin’ Donuts drink and a tall-sized drink from Starbucks, Dunkin’ Donuts is a better place to invest your money in and enjoy more coffee.

Aroma: With the many different types of spices in the latte, I expected a very foul smell from the mixture of many different types of spices. However, it was a very soothing smell. The spices did not overwhelm my nose while I was drinking either the Dunkin’ Donuts and Starbucks, which I was very thankful for.

The Verdict: The debut of the pumpkin spice latte at Starbucks gave me high expectations for its fall-vibe taste. Sadly, I did not see the special hype of the drink. I did not particularly enjoy the taste of  just the spice and no pumpkin. The aroma was pleasant, but I would rather spend my money on sweet drinks.

Rather than a tasty drink, I see the pumpkin spice latte a drink for its aesthetics. It gives off a fall-like vibe and with the infamous Starbucks cup, it matches the expectations of celebrating the new season of fall. However, the actual taste was not as delicious as I expected to be and therefore, I would not spend my money on the pumpkin spice lattes.

Quick Facts:

  • Starbucks pumpkin spice latte price- Tall: $4.25; Grande: $4.95; Venti: $5.25
  • Dunkin’ Donuts latte price- Small: $2.99; Medium: $3.59; Large: $3.99