Dutch Bros and Starbucks holiday drink showdown 

Many people can agree that one of the most pleasurable things about the holiday season is the extensive seasonal drink menus that coffee chains announce. These seasonal holiday menus signal a time to retire the Pumpkin Spice Lattes and move on to a more festive Peppermint Mocha. This year, Starbucks and Dutch Bros announced a wide variety of lattes, mochas, hot chocolates, and small treats that enhance the holiday spirit.

Peppermint Mocha vs Peppermint Bliss Cold Brew


To begin the showdown of Starbucks and Dutch Bros is a comparison between peppermint drinks. Starbucks offers the iconic Peppermint Mocha, offered both hot and iced, whereas Dutch Bros spices it with a Peppermint Bliss Cold Brew.

The main difference between these two drinks is how they are made; the mocha from Starbucks is essentially made of a latte (espresso, frothed milk, and flavoring,) but what makes it a mocha is the added chocolate. If mochas or lattes are requested cold, they are brewed with warm ingredients and then put over ice. Being brewed warm gives the coffee a lighter body, often sweeter, and sometimes more refreshing.

The Cold Brew from Dutch Bros is brewed without heat and with cold water instead. Brewing without heat adds a more bold, strong, and less acidic flavor that some people prefer. Cold Brews are often less sweet than lattes or mochas and offer a more prominent robust traditional coffee flavor.

The Peppermint Mocha from Starbucks served both hot a cold, has a more outstanding sweet flavor. A subtle peppermint syrup flavor backs the sweet chocolate sensation that melts through your mouth.

Although, unlike the Peppermint Bliss Cold Brew from Dutch, the Peppermint Mocha does not have the authentic natural peppermint taste. It seems slightly like an artificially enhanced syrup (which it is.)

For people who want a festive drink featuring peppermint and a less intense coffee flavor, and something creamier and sweeter, the Peppermint Mocha from Starbucks would be a perfect choice.

For many people who do not enjoy such sweet, creamy drinks, the Peppermint Bliss Cold Brew is a great alternative. The combination of bold coffee flavors complemented with the sweet, robust peppermint flavor is a perfect combination. Also, this drink does not contain a solid bitter coffee flavor; it is the ideal balance between sweetness, coffee flavor, and the holiday spirit.

Overall, both these drinks offer different flavors and balances of sweetness; both Starbucks and Dutch Bros provide an excellent option to a peppermint coffee in which many people can find enjoyment.

Iced Almond Milk Sugar Cookie Latte and Glacier Peak Rebel

Two alternative drinks that are new this year are the Iced Almond Milk Sugar Cookie Latte from Starbucks and the Glacier Peak Rebel from Dutch Bros. Although these drinks are very different, I think they are both delightful within their elements.

Starting with Starbucks, the Iced Almond Milk Sugar Cookie Latte has a nice balance of creamy caffeinated sweetness. The almond milk adds to a combination of cookie flavors and enhances the overall drinks taste. Although this drink is supposed to be a sweet treat is has a note worth an insufficient amount of sugar (19G — depending on the size– relatively low for lattes and roughly half as much sugar as a can of coke.) One thing noted about this drink is the true-to-taste sugar cookie flavor, which seems like a festive holiday treat that people can sip around a fire.

The Dutch Bros iconic energy drink, the Rebel, is spiced up for this holiday season. The Glacier Rebel offers a much additional sweetness compared to the other drinks (for a small, there is over 50G of sugar.) The Rebel has a fruity balance of flavors that can be served blended (preferred) or iced. The sweet fruit blended flavor, reminiscing of a slurpy from 711, is paired perfectly with the creamy foam placed on top of the drink. This foam adds a nice contrast between the sweetness and helps the overall amount of sugar tasteless than it is to the tongue. For an energy drink styled like a holiday slurpy, it gets the job done. Even with excessive sugar, the Rebel is still a perfect alternative to a caffeine source aside from coffee.