Now that the Pumpkin Spice Lattes are out of season and Santa and his elves took the Peppermint Mochas back to the North Pole, what is everyone ordering at Starbuck’s? They’re ordering a drink called the Flat White. 

Flat Whites aren't something new. They've been a staple in Australia and New Zealand for decades. In fact, the origin of the Flat White is up for debate. Both countries lay claim to making a perfected version. There are some coffee shops in the United States that have been serving the Flat White for years, but it was only recently introduced to the masses, through Starbucks.

I’m sitting in my local Starbucks right now drinking my first Flat White. I ordered a small. (I refuse to say tall for small. It makes no sense.) You can see a photo of my drink above, along with my favorite treat from Starbucks, the lemon loaf.

Here’s a description of the Flat White from the company’s website.

A product of simplicity, crafted into artistry, our baristas know that balance is key to the perfect Flat White. An extra ristretto shot ensures that it’s bolder than a latte, yet steamed milk keeps it smoother than a cappuccino. But perfection doesn't end there—the technique for steaming and pouring the milk requires close attention as well. Steamed milk is folded into itself creating a velvety microfoam that gives the Flat White its silky texture and signature white dot.
I have to wonder, where’s my velvety microfoam and signature white dot? I took the photo at the left of the Flat White marketing poster at Starbucks. My drink didn't look at all like that. What I was given looks and tastes just like the latte that I usually get. It didn’t even seem bolder to me.

It was fine. I didn’t hate it, but honestly, I’m having trouble distinguishing it from a latte. It’s not the coffee revelation that a lot of the hype and the people gushing over it on Twitter are making it out to be. It’s just another coffee and milk option — with the proportions of the two being slightly different than the proportions in other drinks.

I did enjoy the lemon loaf, though. I haven’t let myself order a slice in about two years. I was due.

Have you tried the Flat White? What's your opinion?

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Robin Shreeves ( @rshreeves ) focuses on food from a family perspective from her home base in New Jersey.

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