You’ve probably heard of the new ‘Flat White’ that Starbucks introduced and added permanently to their drinks menu a few weeks ago. If you haven’t, then you can read more about it below and why I believe it will not be as successful as it could have been.
A flat white is a coffee beverage invented in Australia in the 1970s and further developed in New Zealand in the 1980s. It is prepared by pouring microfoam (steamed milk with small, fine bubbles and a glossy or velvety consistency) over a single or double shot of espresso. It is somewhat similar to the cappuccino or the latte although smaller in volume, therefore having a higher proportion of coffee to milk (closer to a cortado), and milk that is more velvety in consistency – allowing the espresso to dominate the flavor, while being supported by the milk.
In simpler words, a flat white is like a latte except it is prepared differently to create a more velvety texture and bolder taste. Once you try a proper flat white, a normal latte will taste like ‘bitter water’ in my opinion. If you are a coffee connoisseur yourself, and want to revalidate this fact, there are many an excellent review site on the internet vying to give reviews on the most popular flavours. So since the flat white is suppose to be a better coffee experience for coffee lovers (yes, I am definitely one of them) then it should be a success right?
There is always a but coming along the lines of success. With a flat white, it is prepared more complex than a normal drink to make it perfect texture and flavour-wise. The problem that I’ve encountered with the flat white from Starbucks (at least) is the people that prepare the drink. The drink is prepared the same way, or it should be but the problem arises with the baristas as they are not competent in making the drink!
This includes people who:
- Don’t know how to make the drink (lack training)
- Don’t have enough practice (lack experience)
- Don’t care at all (lack motivation)
The first flat white I tried from Starbucks was amazing! And you know why? Because I knew the person who made it and he spent his time making the drink for me. He spent a solid few minutes trying to perfect the ‘dot’ at the top and he informed me it was more difficult with lactose free milk (as I’m lactose intolerant). Therefore I had high expectations after my first flat white because it was near perfection. I’ve attached photos of it throughout the post because it was beautiful.
The second, third, fourth, etc time I’ve had a flat white? A disaster. Absolute mess. It was not prepared with the heart and soul of making the drink, and I do take my coffee seriously because it is the one thing that makes my day. Besides waking me up in the morning with a jolt, it is something I love to enjoy and take my time to pleasure. Therefore, it ended up being a disappointment.
But the worst thing was? One of the flat whites that I got was an absolute tragedy. It was prepared without care at all as the barista was talking to her friend at the cashier at the same time as she poured the milk into my drink. She did not account for properly the amount of milk since it ran short by A LOT. Then to cover it up, she put a fluffed up layer of foam to try and hide the fact there was so much missing. Not only that but the foam that she tried to use to cover the missing drink was also not enough as a portion of my cup was still empty. It looked like my drink was missing a good 1/4 at least, and there was no ‘dot’ at the top. It ended up being a ridiculous white mess and it was very, very, very unappealing to look at. I could not slab a lid on top of it fast enough.
From all my previous experiences with the Starbucks flat white, it is definitely a disappointing one which led me to write this post up on my 2 cents. I’m an avid starbucks drinker for the past years and years… and years. But recently it has seemed to downgraded a lot and my coffee tastes more like sugary water + milk. It ends with an unsettling feeling afterwards that will linger for hours!
Unfortunately to add onto this recent disappointment, I’m also so irritated that they took out Tazo tea and replaced them with Teavana. I understand they acquired Teavana but the tea just taste so much worse than the old ones. They have a weird type of taste… and it’s more bland than usual. Oh not to mention the PRICE INCREASE of a tea at Starbucks too.. it use to be $1.95 for a tall AND for a grande then $2.10 for a venti. Now they’ve increased it to a lot more, I can’t remember exactly but it was $2 something for a grande and more for a venti.