Pumpkin Spice Hits Japan, But Not at Starbucks

Starbucks is famed for its sugary seasonal selections and this autumn’s Hojicha Crème Frappuccino with Caramel Sauce is no exception. Back in the coffee chain’s homeland of the US, however, autumn is synonymous with the release of the Pumpkin Spice Latte. The drink fills the screens of Snapchat, Instagram, and Twitter users worldwide and inspires the same kind of fervor that new iPhone releases do. However, with the announcement of its Hojicha treat, Starbucks has made it clear it’s sticking to a more “wa”-influenced flavor range here in Japan.

So Pumpkin Spice Lattes are nowhere to be seen… or, at least not at good ol’ Sutaba.

Tully’s, on the other hand, is happy to provide customers with what they desire. Pumpkin-themed drinks have been on their autumn menu since 2014 and have, unsurprisingly, proven to be very popular. This year, two new drinks have been available since September 2.

The Caramel Pumpkin Latte fuses espresso and steamed milk with a sweet pumpkin sauce, which is then topped with whipped cream and ground pumpkin seeds. Both the sauce and whipped cream hail from Hokkaido and add an aromatic sweetness to the brew.  The latte comes either iced or hot and will set you back ¥540 for a Tall mug and ¥600 for a Grande.

For tea lovers, the Caramel Pumpkin Tea Swirkle is a frozen drink with a milk tea base. The fragrant caramel and pumpkin add an autumnal element to this caffeinated brew. It comes in Short, Tall and Grande sizes, costing ¥510, ¥570, and ¥630 respectively.

 

 

Peanuts Café, the Snoopy-rific eatery in Nakameguro, has gone whole hog and released an entire Halloween-themed menu, delicious drinks included.

For those looking to satisfy a serious sweet tooth, the Halloween Caramel Milk (¥800 plus tax) may be just the ticket. A decadent caramel milk-based beverage topped with toasted marshmallows and caramel popcorn, this almost meal-in-a-mug is made complete with a slathering of pumpkin chocolate sauce.

The Halloween Milkshake (¥880 plus tax) is a spicy and fragrant creation, combining cinnamon and pumpkin for a velvety, thick milkshake. Topped with sweet chocolate whipped cream and crushed pumpkin seeds, it’s the ultimate autumnal concoction. Guests ordering this will also get a cute Peanuts Halloween-themed coaster that they can take home with them.

 

Although it’s not a drink, Cinnabon also has an orange-colored limited-edition creation for the season: The Pumpkin Minibon (¥380). Coated in pumpkin cream cheese frosting and sprinkled with a pumpkin seed topping, these miniature cinnamon rolls are sure to sell like hotcakes.

These are available until October 31 at Cinnabon’s Roppongi, Futago-Tamagawa S.C., and Cocoon City stores.

These pumpkin-laden creations are all available for a limited time only, so grab them while you can!

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