The Tastes of Fall

It’s that time of year again! Not only is Starbucks bringing back the Pumpkin Spice Latte to its seasonal menu, it’s also introducing a tasty beverage called the Chile Mocha.

The exciting new flavor is made with espresso and steamed milk infused with a cocoa and cinnamon powder, topped with a dollop of whipped cream. It’s then finished with a sprinkle of chile mocha topping consisting of ancho and cayenne chile pepper, cinnamon, paprika, sugar and a touch of sea salt. It can be served as a Frappuccino blended beverage or as coffee-free hot chocolate.

Michelle Sundquist, Starbucks’ senior product developer, was part of the team behind this new flavor. “When we think about fall, often people think about warmth and spice, like cinnamon and apple pie,” Sundquist said, “We decided to take that idea in a new direction with chocolate and a bit of heat.” The team found inspiration from other sweet and spicy flavors such as mole, horchata and a thick Mexican drink called champurrado. They also explored a variety of chili peppers along the heat scale, settling on ancho, a heart-shaped pepper with mild heat and a sweet, fruity flavor, and a touch of cayenne.

So move over, Pumpkin Spice…there’s a new taste in town for autumn, and it’s stirring up a spicy sensation!

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