Starbucks this week announced the early access of Pumpkin Spice Latte (PSL) to its most loyal of fans. The Teavana Oprah Chai Tea Latte and the return of sweet and savory Salted Caramel Mocha will officially kick off the fall season at Starbucks stores nationwide on Tuesday, Sept. 2.
“Our customers tell us that their first sip of Pumpkin Spice Latte signals the onset of the fall season,” said Cliff Burrows, group president, U.S., Americas, and Teavana. “The fanfare and excitement amongst our customers and partners surrounding its onset each year is extraordinary to witness, and we’re pleased to be able to give a sneak preview of this beloved beverage ahead of the official Fall launch in September. Our stores are a gathering place to re-connect and re-establish routines – especially during this time of year – and we’re humbled to be a part of that experience.”
This is the fourth year in a row that PSL fanatics were given the opportunity to gain early access to the beverage through a special online experience. To celebrate its triumphant return, PSL launched an official Twitter account, @TheRealPSL earlier this month, and captivated social media with the “Spot the Spice” challenge. The online scavenger hunt led PSL’s biggest fans through a series of daily clues, which concluded Monday with the final clue. A secret passcode, “FIRST PSL” allows customers to “unlock” their store to get the beverage a week early. Fans can still provide the password to their baristas to gain early access through Friday afternoon. On Twitter, PSL fans have shared excitement for their favorite beverage in the past by posting more than 3,000 tweets per day during the months when it’s available in stores. The beverage is Starbucks top-selling seasonal beverage of all time.
“We know this cherished beverage is one that Starbucks customers wait for with anticipation all year, so this year’s online scavenger hunt was a fitting way to give our most fanatical Pumpkin Spice Latte fans an opportunity to unlock their store and enjoy this seasonal favorite before it officially launches across the country,” said Alexandra Wheeler, vice president, Starbucks Global Digital Marketing.
Cozy Up with Starbucks Fall Beverage Trio
- Pumpkin Spice Latte: Back for its 11th season, PSL is a perfectly handcrafted signature espresso beverage that features steamed milk, rich and creamy pumpkin flavored sauce, and warm seasonal spices such as cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and clove. The beverage is finished with a dollop of whipped cream and Starbucks pumpkin spice topping and is customizable to meet customers’ unique taste preferences. Also available hot, iced or as a Frappuccino blended beverage.
- Teavana Oprah Chai Tea Latte: A bold infusion of cinnamon, ginger, cardamom and cloves, blended with loose-leaf black tea and rooibos. Lightly sweetened and finished with steamed milk or cold milk poured over iced. Starbucks donates 25 cents (U.S.) from the sale of this beverage to benefit educational opportunities for youth through the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy Foundation. For more information, visit www.oprah.com/oprahchai.
- Salted Caramel Mocha: This customer favorite features espresso and steamed milk, blended with mocha sauce and toffee nut flavored syrup. Topped with sweetened whipped cream, caramel drizzle and a mixture of turbinado sugar and sea salt, this beverage pairs well with a crisp fall morning or cozy afternoon. Available hot or iced.
Fall Food Offerings
Comforting fall-inspired beverages are best paired with Starbucks warm, delicious trio of bakery items by La Boulange, including fall favorites Pumpkin Scone, Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffin, and Washington Apple Pound Cake.
- Pumpkin Scone: Filled with flavors of the season, pumpkin pie spice, brown sugar, cinnamon and topped with delicious icing.
- Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffin: Richly spiced pumpkin muffin topped with a sprinkling of chopped caramelized pepitas (pumpkin seeds) and an indulgent cream cheese filling.
- Washington Apple Pound Cake: A traditional pound cake with roasted apples that have been tossed with sugar and a hint a cinnamon, made with apples from Washington state.
Additional Fall Coffee Favorites
Starbucks VIA Pumpkin Spice Latte returns this year with a new recipe in that customers simply need to just add water and enjoy a PSL on the go.
Also returning is Starbucks Anniversary Blend, available in whole bean, K-Cup Packs and Verismo pods, exclusive to participating Starbucks stores. Originally created in 1996 as a special coffee to celebrate Starbucks 25th anniversary, this coffee is so adored by customers that it has become an annual tradition ever since.
New this year is Starbucks Fall Blend, a layered and full-bodied coffee blend reminiscent of fall season, available exclusively where you buy groceries for a limited time.
To join the social conversation about Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte using hashtag #PSL and follow @TheRealPSL on Twitter.