Starbucks’ New Pineapple Passionfruit Refresher Tastes Just Like a Piña Colada
But you have to order it like this to get the flavor of the iconic cocktail.
Starbucks and coffee are pretty much synonymous, sure. But on a hot summer day or if you’re just not a coffee person, the chain’s line of Refreshers — iced, lightly caffeinated drinks made with real fruit juice and green coffee extract — can be just the thing.
Now there are two new choices in the chain’s rainbow of fruit-forward flavors: In celebration of the first official day of summer and the longest day of the year, on Tuesday, June 21, Starbucks is adding Pineapple Passionfruit Starbucks Refreshers and Paradise Drink Starbucks Refreshers beverages to its permanent menus.
Described by the chain as “bright,” “bold,” “golden-hued” and “inspired by the wistful flavors of a pineapple popsicle and passionfruit shaved ice,” the Pineapple Passionfruit Starbucks Refreshers beverage combines the summery, tropical flavors of pineapple and passionfruit. Hand-shaken by your friendly Starbucks barista, the drink also includes diced pieces of real pineapple and plenty of ice to “create a delicious island escape,” as Starbucks puts it.
Since it wouldn’t be Starbucks without variations, you can get the Pineapple Passionfruit Starbucks Refreshers with either water or lemonade. You can also get it with coconut milk for a creamy — albeit non-dairy — version the chain is calling the Paradise Drink Starbucks Refreshers beverage.
“The Paradise Drink Starbucks Refreshers beverage is like sunshine in a cup – the bright tropical flavors are radiant, happy and joyful,” Raegan Powell, a senior product developer from Starbucks R&D who led the creation of the new drink, said in a news release. “It’s the perfect summer sip for a little moment of escape wherever you are.”
We got an advance taste of all three versions of the new beverage, and they were all, yes, very refreshing. The iteration made with lemonade was a bit more intense and sweeter than the version made with water, as you might imagine. Both were tasty.
But of all three, the coconut milk version — a.k.a. the Paradise Drink Starbucks Refreshers beverage — was the clear winner. It was basically like drinking a pina colada without the rum. And even though the Grande was only 140 calories, it was actually surprisingly filling.
The diced pineapple pieces (dried, we think? With a little crunch), which both floated on top and sank to the bottom, like a reward when you’d thirstily sucked down all the liquid, were a particularly nice touch.
Along with the new drinks, Starbucks is adding new food choices to its menus this summer as well. The chain’s new Chicken, Maple Butter and Egg Sandwich — chicken, fluffy eggs and a maple butter spread on a toasted oat biscuit roll — offers “a satisfying and savory sandwich with a hint of sweetness,” according to Starbucks. And the Cookies & Cream Cake Pop features chocolate cake with sandwich cookie buttercream and cookie bits, coated with white chocolate, and crowned with dark chocolate cookie crumb.
In addition, Starbucks is introducing a new line of summer-inspired merchandise — including cold cups, tumblers and water bottles. In terms of design, think fruits, flowers and fun new variations on fan favorites, including a 24-ounce Dragonfruit Bling Cup, a 12-ounce Berry Tumbler and an 18-ounce Berry Blossoms Cold Cup.
Note: If you’re a Starbucks Rewards member and you bring a clean, personal reusable cup to a participating store, you’ll not only get 10 cents off your beverage, but 25 Stars as well. So you can add “reusable” and “rewarding” to “refreshing” on your list of Starbucks summer menu adjectives.