Starbucks Just Announced A Unique Drink For Espresso Lovers

Springtime is almost officially here, and for coffee lovers, that means one exciting thing: cafes are trading in their heavy winter coffee drinks for new spring flavors. Starbucks has been teasing its newest spring flavor on social media for a while, and on February 28, the chain tweeted out yet another hint: "Vanilla's alter ego is coming." Now, on March 1, the secret is out. Starbucks' newest drink is the Toasted Vanilla Oatmilk Shaken Espresso (via Starbucks).

This is the third shaken espresso drink to join the Starbucks menu, and according to the chain, this one will be sticking around for good. The coffee hub already serves up an Iced Brown Sugar Oatmilk Shaken Espresso and an Iced Chocolate Almondmilk Shaken Espresso, but this is the first iced shaken espresso drink to feature vanilla. Though some people may see "vanilla" and think "boring," this new coffee drink puts a unique twist on the classic flavor.

Toasted vanilla is key

You can already add vanilla syrup to pretty much any drink at Starbucks, but the coffee giant's new iced shaken espresso drink is flavored with "toasted vanilla." Like the other shaken espresso drinks, it's made with Starbucks blonde roast espresso, which is lighter than what the chain uses in its standard espresso drinks. Then, it's flavored with toasted vanilla, which apparently tastes lightly caramelized (via Starbucks). The flavor sounds like it would be a cross between traditional vanilla syrup and Serious Eats writer Stella Parks' cult-favorite toasted white sugar, which is described as "a sort of 'granulated caramel'." 

And since it uses oat milk, it's also totally dairy-free. Starbucks confirmed to a fan on Instagram that there are "no ingredients derived from animals in this beverage," even though it's not technically "certified vegan."

The drink is available at Starbucks locations nationwide as of March 1, and some reviews are already pouring in. "Got mine this morning and it is spring in a cup," said one fan on Instagram. "Vanilla is my favorite syrup, so of course I'm in love with this toasty version!" said another. The Toasted Vanilla Oatmilk Shaken Espresso is here to stay, so chances are you'll hear even more reviews in the coming days.