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Starbucks unveils new flavors in time for fall

Throwing on a warm, oversized sweater to combat the crisp morning air while feeling the dire need to light a cinnamon-nutmeg candle can only mean one thing — fall is here. With this wonderful season comes the annual Starbucks fall menu, also known as the only thing getting most Rutgers students through the midterm season. As the leaves wither away, so does a student’s capacity to stay on task and focus on their studies. A student’s inclination to visit their local Starbucks for their daily dose of caffeine may increase due to those reasons. For those who want to open their palette to autumnal flavors during these trips, we reviewed the diverse Starbucks fall menu.

For the common sweet tooth, Starbucks has the salted caramel mocha latte. The latte is a warm blend of espresso, milk, toffee nut syrup and mocha. It is topped off with a sweet fluff of whipped cream and a beautiful caramel drizzle. There's an added kick from the sprinkled sea salt which pops in your mouth to create the overall savory flavor of the salted caramel mocha latte. Enjoyed as a grande size, this was the most interesting fall menu item as its multiple flavors mix to create a warm, sweet n’ salty delight. For a limited time, Starbucks is also selling a salted caramel mocha Frappuccino, which is a great transitional drink for those who miss sweet summer Starbucks. This milkshake-esque drink is an explosion of taste, just as it’s hot sister drink but with an icy twist.

The maple pecan latte is mostly for those with a more reserved palette. There is a subtlety to the pecan flavor that comes together with the sweet, woody maple to create a sophisticated beverage. The maple pecan latte is created using fresh steamed milk and espresso, but it contains notes of brown butter as well as fresh maple syrup. It is topped with special, crystallized sugar toppings resembling the mingling of brightly colored fall leaves.

It is the perfect coffee to cozy up with in the morning or when studying by the fire because of its muted but delicious sweetness.  

Lastly, we have the classic pumpkin spice latte (PSL). This latte is a full-bodied and rich helping of pumpkin espresso, nutmeg, clove and cinnamon. The PSL is not just a beverage, but an experience as it feels like a fresh pumpkin pie melting in your mouth. The PSL is a staple item on the Starbucks menu and is highly recommended for those who have never had a fall drink. For the days when the fall weather isn’t cool enough for a warm PSL, Starbucks has released the iced PSL to facilitate the obsession. The PSL is a comfort beverage which never fails to evoke the feelings of fall, encouraging people to wear flannels and go pumpkin picking. 

While you might find the PSL to be the quintessential fall beverage, many Rutgers students found the salted caramel mocha to be better and equally autumnal. When 30 students from the Livingston Plaza Starbucks were asked what the optimal fall Starbucks flavor was to them, 36.7 percent said the salted caramel mocha. But, the majority remained in the hands of the PSL as 53.3 percent of students deemed it the favorable fall flavor. Only 10 percent preferred the Maple Pecan Latte, proving that it is an acquired taste.  

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