Drink Review: The Starbucks Flat White

Starbucks has has some missteps in the past couple of years and its trying really hard to get an edge in the market again. A wild Flat White appears, Starbucks goes “huh”, and quickly appropriates it for its customers.

Now, I am not going to lie to you, gingerbread lattes and PSL’s are standard in my Winter diet. WAIT, don’t click off the site and disown me just yet. I know, having worked very briefly making ‘real coffee’ drinks, that these are anything but. The Flat White is trying to change all that; Starbucks is trying to round out its espresso menu and appear to be serious about coffee again.

So… what’s a Flat White? Well, its a very popular coffee drink in the Australian Market. Not quite a latte, not quite a cappuccino, not quite a macchiato. An odd mix of all three maybe? As explained by Hugh Jackman (yes, the actor) “A latte with a little less milk and more espresso.” (Wong, 2015). The Starbucks Flat White ends up being a creamy delight, if done right.

The taste is, well, it tastes like a strong latte. The only downfall is that its Starbucks coffee, which I typically don’t drink straight unless I know the Barista. The problem is, if you get a bad Barista, you get a bad Flat White. You get burnt grounds, and Flat Whites should be sweet. Even Starbuck says this on their site, they say their Flat Whites are produced with ristretto shot. “A ristretto shot delivers a sweeter, more intense coffee flavor” (Starbucks, 2015). What the heck is a ristretto? Well, coffee fiends don’t even seem to agree on this, but Tim Jensen of Roasters Notes explains it well in this video:

Coffee Shots: Espresso vs Doppio vs Ristretto from Tim Jensen on Vimeo.

When it comes down to it, both Flat Whites I have had have been good, but not life changing. If you don’t have a good local coffee shop, this will be your best bet, if you want an honest coffee drink in the morning.

 

Citations of Sources 

Starbucks introduces the Flat White to customers in the US and Canada | Starbucks Newsroom. (n.d.). Retrieved January 26, 2015, from http://news.starbucks.com/news/starbucks-flat-white-espresso-beverage

Starbucks introduces the Flat White to customers in the US and Canada | Starbucks Newsroom. (n.d.). Retrieved January 26, 2015, from http://news.starbucks.com/news/starbucks-flat-white-espresso-beverage

Jensen, T. (2014, January 1). Coffee Shots: Espresso vs Doppio vs Ristretto. Retrieved January 26, 2015, from http://vimeo.com/76570347