Starbucks is well known for their seasonal drink offerings during the winter holidays; this year, though they’ve been branching out beyond the warm and cozy classics we know and love and into some options that are substantially cooler — literally: The Starbucks Fruitcake Frappuccino has arrived. It joins the Spiced Sweet Cream Narino 70 Cold Brew that hit the menu earlier this season as one of two ways for those who live in climates that aren’t freezing cold during the winter to get their holiday cheer on without overheating. There’s just one catch: This new Frapp will only be available for a limited time. A very, very limited time. A single weekend, in fact.
From Dec. 15 through Dec. 18, the Fruitcake Frappuccino will be available at participating Starbucks locations in the United States and Canada. As you may have guessed from its name, it takes its cues from the classic holiday dessert — which, by the way, goes back a lot further than you might think: According to Smithsonian Magazine, the ancient Romans actually made something that might be considered the earliest form of fruitcake. (Smithsonian describes it as “a mishmash of barley, pomegranate seeds, nuts, and raisins as a sort of energy bar,” which, uh… sounds very fruitcake-like to me.) When dried fruit became more accessible in the Middle Ages, the fruitcake as we know it was born; as the centuries rolled on, a whole bunch of variations on the theme emerged (panforte, anyone?), with the confection ultimately becoming most heavily associated with the winter holidays.
Starbucks’ latest beverage mimics the flavor of fruitcake without actually involving any actual cake. It starts with a Hazelnut Creme Frappuccino — not unlike the Birthday Cake Frapp, which has a Vanilla Bean Creme Frappuccino plus some hazelnut syrup as its base — and blends it all up with dried fruit and cinnamon. Then, it’s topped with whipped cream (of course) and finished off with a sprinkling of “caramel dots” and matcha. Unusual? Sure. But then again, I’ve consumed many of unusual-sounding foodstuffs in my lifetime, so I’m totally willing to give this one a shot. It also doesn’t have any caffeine in it, which means that those of us who tend to avoid the high test stuff in the afternoon so as not to mess with our sleep schedules can sip without fear. Bonus points for that.
The Fruitcake Frappuccino will range from $4.25 to $4.95 for a 12-ounce Tall, depending on the market. Act fast if you want to try it, though — it’ll be gone come Monday. Alas, the holiday season doesn’t last forever. Oh, and don't forget to grab an Ugly Sweater Cookie while you're at it — those are on the menu, too!
Images: Starbucks; Giphy