It’s that time of year again, when the days gradually get longer and the buds begin to form on the trees, reminding us that sakura season is just around the corner. And that means it’s time for Starbucks to unveil its first cherry blossom drinks for the season, which this year are…
▼…the Sakura Saku Saku Frappuccino and the Sakura Soy Latte
As the above image shows, it’s not just the drinks that are blooming this year, as customers will be able to enjoy a side of augmented reality with their beverages.
▼ Simply scan the QR code on your receipt and when you point your camera above a flat surface or the in-store poster, a Bearista bear will appear, amidst a burst of blossoms.
So what’s in this year’s first round of sakura drinks? Well, the Sakura Saku Saku Frappuccino is a play on words that draws upon saku, meaning “to blossom“, and saku saku meaning “crispy“. This texture is a central feature of the drink, with crispy strawberry-flavoured macaron pieces scattered on top to replicate the crisp new cherry blossom petals.
Sitting at the bottom of the Frappuccino is a beautiful pink mound of sakura jelly, which has been mixed with cherry blossom petals. When stirred into the body of the drink, which is made with sakura-flavored pearl sugar and a strawberry-flavoured Frappuccino, every mouthful will “make your heart bounce” with joy.
▼ The Frappuccino is priced at 678 yen for takeout, while the latte is available in all sizes, from 540 yen.
The Sakura Soy Latte contains steamed soy milk, which is poured into a sakura strawberry sauce inside every cup. Topped with sakura strawberry chocolate shavings and a dusting of pink sugar, this hot beverage is inspired by cherry blossoms in full bloom to help you look forward to the arrival of spring.
That’s not the only thing we have to look forward to, as the chain has also unveiled this year’s range of sweet sakura treats. Pictured below, clockwise from top, we have:
▼ Sakura Chiffon Cake (432 yen), Sakura Doughnut (270 yen), Sakura and Matcha Doughnut (285 yen), and a tin of sakura and matcha cookies (2,100 yen)
It’s nice to see the actual flavor of sakura playing a big part in this year’s cherry blossom collection, given that it’s been overtaken by berries and cherries in past releases.
The entire range will be available until 14 March, with sales starting on 15 February, the day after we say sayonara to the chain’s chocolatey Valentine’s Day Frappuccino.
Source, images: Starbucks Japan
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Yum! Sugar and chemicals.
I was a faithful Starbucks patron since they came to town, in the 1980s, but last year I found a place that is much better, so Starbucks has mostly lost my patronage. The deli/bakery/cafe with the coffee that is my new go-to coffee bar is called Porto's. A family owned and operated chain, not a corporation. The family came here to escape Castro. Castro's loss has been our gain. They are only available in Southern Cal. They have been invited to open a store at Disneyland, which they plan to do next year.
This is not meant to be an advertisement. I really, really love a good cup of coffee.
Starbucks. Overpriced mediocre coffee. Which is why they have to constantly come up with seasonal specialties.
On the other hand, Starbucks in Japan went non-smoking, and for that, they will always have my gratitude. Started the trend to non-smoking in other coffee chains, such as Tullys and even (mostly) Dotuers .
I stopped going to this overpriced cup of mere coffee years ago and my bank account has gone in the thousands.