You, there! What day is this? November 3, you say? Of the year 2021? Why, then that means that the good news can finally be sung from the rooftops: Starbucks has released its holiday cup lineup for the grateful, holiday-hungry masses to enjoy.
A press release sent to The Takeout confirms that the cups—and the holiday beverages they ferry—will be available nationwide starting November 4.
We might never be able to explain how The Starbucks Cups became such a cultural touchstone (controversy and all), except that the unveiling of The Cups has become a reliably festive annual event, and we love anything festive to look forward to, don’t we, folks? Starbucks itself markets the November and December as “red cup season,” and this year, it’s making good on that marketing by ensuring that no one gets handed an utterly inferior green or white cup like the 2019 designs.
In fact, anything I could say about the cups would pale in comparison to what Starbucks has included in the press release about them. The holiday cup descriptions are as follows:
- Wrapping Paper: A perfectly wrapped gift was the inspiration for this design, featuring a colorful geometric pattern of circles, sparkles and glitter grain in the season’s signature shades.
- Ribbon: This design evokes a familiar moment of the season, with pieces of ribbon in white and iridescent lilac playfully dancing against a red field of sparkles, like when you’ve just finished wrapping up gifts for friends and family.
- Holiday Lights: This cup design is like the stars on a clear winter’s night, sparkling holiday lights peek out amid a swirl of ribbons and a jumble of bold, graphic letters that spell out “Starbucks.”
- Candy Cane: A design that looks as delicious as a Peppermint Mocha, inspired by a candy cane with the Starbucks wordmark and candy stripes of green, white and lilac.
These new cups are cute, but my favorite in recent years has been the 2020 Starbucks holiday cups, where the logo was a lot smaller and the chunky blocks of holiday color were more pronounced. Starbucks, invite me to your focus groups. I have thoughts on your color story!
Oh, yes, and we should probably talk about what will be poured into the cups. Starbucks is bringing back some heavy-hitters to its holiday drink menu: Peppermint Mocha, Caramel Brulee Latte, Chestnut Praline Latte, and the Toasted White Chocolate Mocha.
The new holiday drink this year is one that follows Starbucks’ shift toward more alternative-milk beverages: the Iced Sugar Cookie Almondmilk Latte, which is the first non-dairy holiday drink ever added to the Starbucks menu. (“Also delicious as a hot beverage,” assures the press release.)
And finally, because the Pumpkin Spice Latte surely taught the brand that earlier is always better, the Starbucks Irish Cream Cold Brew is also hitting the menu on November 4, earlier than it has ever debuted before.
A new Reindeer Cake Pop will join the ranks of the bakery case, and longtime favorite holiday items like the Cranberry Bliss Bar and the Snowman Cookie (my god, you all love that cookie so much) are headed back as well.
So, which items are you most excited to order in these endlessly festive cups? Are any of my fellow Midwesterners’ teeth chattering at the very thought of an iced drink on a winter menu, or is that just me?