Starbucks was born in Seattle, home to the sort of damp, cool weather that cries out for a hot beverage. Their menu includes around 50 distinct drinks at any given time with innumerable variations of those options.
Feeling overwhelmed? Allow us to make some suggestions.
To condense the menu, today we've decided to focus on the best Starbucks drinks that steam rather than cool you off. You won't find a white chocolate mocha frappuccino, cold brew or an iced green tea in here.
We've rounded up 6 of our very favorite hot, coffee-infused beverages below. Cuddle up with a simmering cup of one of Starbucks' very best hot drinks.
1. Café Americano
A fitting tribute to espresso's elegant simplicity, Café Americano has just two ingredients: a double shot of espresso and hot water poured immediately on top. This simple recipe yields the impressive depth and subtlety that is exclusive to freshly ground espresso brews.
Typically made with an even ratio of espresso to hot water, this Italian classic can dial up the caffeine with extra espresso shots. However, it's the perfectly timed addition of very hot water to the espresso that is the essential step. Your taste buds will thank you for the intense coffee flavor in this Starbucks coffee.
Simplicity --a double-shot of espresso-- is a winning formula for the small yet strong Doppio. It serves as the foundation of most of the more complex and larger espresso-based drinks. A cheap, tasty option, this packs a big punch despite its small size.
Coffee drinkers know that all popular drinks start with a simple shot of espresso, and this one takes the cake.
3. Caramel Macchiato
Espresso poured over the creamy foam and steamed milk blends beneath a "crosshatch of sweet caramel"-- a caramel design that showcases each barista's unique, creative touch - to produce the complex, sugary Caramel Macchiato. If you're a coffee lover with a sweet tooth, we heartily recommend this Starbucks classic.
4. Flat White
A relative newcomer to the Starbucks menu, hailing from Australia, the Flat White is fast becoming a favorite, served up in grande cups.
A double-shot of espresso gives this hot drink a bigger caffeine-kick than lattes while a delicately folded head of steamed milk produces its signature silky texture.
5. Pike Place Blend
Simple, flavorful, and familiar, Pike Place--a medium-roast blend named for the original Starbucks, which opened in Seattle's Pike Place Market in 1971 is a signature Starbucks offering. "Smooth and balanced", this blend aims to please and warm a wide audience of hot-coffee enthusiasts.
6. Pumpkin Spice Latte
The classic version of the latte is a single espresso shot in steamed milk with a light layer of foam. Starbucks brews up a seemingly endless variety of these popular offerings through the year, including the Pumpkin Spice Latte.
Eagerly awaited every fall, yet only briefly available, the Pumpkin Spice Latte is without a doubt Starbucks' most anticipated seasonal product. This drink's pumpkin-spice sauce blends notes of cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove into a nostalgic combination of autumn flavors. And let's not forget the whipped cream on top.
With a carefully manufactured brevity, and aggressive marketing campaign--including a dedicated Twitter feed --the spiced-latte's devoted following has spawned customer-designed apps to track its impending arrival in stores.