Starbucks Caramel Iced VIA

9 Sep

Having received this wonderful gift from a great friend Sarah @Pencil_to_Paper in “Aggieland” ๐Ÿ˜‰ this morning, I was so excited it had to be made into a Blog post. I am totally obsessed with iced coffee drinks, from Iced Lattes, Iced Mocha, Iced Americano and my favorite Iced Caramel Macchiatos – so I really had to try some of this stuff. This is the new Starbucks Iced VIA in Caramel flavor. It was released this summer in the US market and has not yet made its way over to the European markets, so trying this item is a real must for die hard Starbucks fans!

The box is a wonderful design with a Starbucks cold cup filled with iced coffee on the front. On the sides there are two images one that reads “On the porch” with the coffee in a glass and “Window shopping” with the coffee in a bottle of water. These VIA’s are really marketed to be anywhere, anytime. Unlike the other hot VIA which is said to be the same but really is not. The hot VIA needs hot water, sugar, and most of the time milk, if you are out camping or “window shopping” where are you going to get hot water, sugar and milk? It just wouldn’t happen. However, Iced VIA is a totally stand alone item that just needs cold water added – buy a bottle of cold water in a shop while walking through town, pop in a pack of this VIA and you got a great sweet Iced coffee, perfect!

On to the opening and tasting, you get 5 quite large packets of VIA in each box. They are a lot larger than the hot VIA packs which only make 8oz of hot coffee, while these Iced VIA’s make 16oz’s each. That’s a whole size up in Starbucks land, from Tall to Grande. When seeing the actually coffee inside the packs it looks kind of white and brown, like sugar added to a normal pack of VIA, but it dissolves very quickly with the exception of the sugar at the bottom which needs to be stirred in a little. Adding some ice and stirring, the Iced VIA is ready to try. The smell of these are really amazing, it smells half like a caramel frappuccino and half like really sweet caramel fudge. I was really excited to try some, but on taking the first sip I was taken aback back how slightly chemically it tasted. It was EXTREMELY sweet with a smokey after taste of coffee and dark caramel. Reading the pack again, I noticed on the back that it says when making it in a glass you can “add milk to taste”, so I did and it totally transformed the taste. Adding milk takes away the chemically caramel flavor and adds a new depth to the overall drink. Like when I tried hot VIA for the first time is really takes time to get used to these, after drinking half a glass I really started to like it. The taste developed and got more and more caramel like, maybe it was the build up of flavorings on my tongue. By the end it had smokey caramel taste with a sweet coffee after taste and really went down well. So, there is my tasting of Starbucks Iced VIA Ready Brew Caramel. The verdict? Try some for yourself, drink a whole glass and see what you think, I have a feeling people will either love it or hate it, either way, go and try some. Enjoy..

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6 Responses to “Starbucks Caramel Iced VIA”

  1. KARA Gooners (@kara86ster) September 15, 2011 at 01:22 #

    Ah, caramel and coffee, sound like the best match ever! But caramel tend to be too sweet. I have this one, but haven’t try it yet. Glad I read this post first, maybe I should get the milk ready before trying it… XD

    • StarbucksMarkDavid September 16, 2011 at 12:33 #

      Yes do! ๐Ÿ™‚ I actually went a bit mad and made one completely on milk – no water at all and it was absolutely lovely! I loved it like that, otherwise I don’t like these, they are to chemically.

  2. Starbucks Melody (@SbuxMel) September 10, 2011 at 17:11 #

    Interesting review. It sort of says that you are undecided about the Iced Caramel Via. I think it’s fine but NOT my favorite Starbucks thing by a long shot. I like it super cold! And @pencil_to_paper is wonderful! Glad you got the Via.

    • StarbucksMarkDavid September 10, 2011 at 17:55 #

      Hey,
      I was undecided about this one. On the one hand it smelled totally amazing, but the taste didn’t match up to the smell sadly. I’m thinking it is either the cane sugar (which has a very unique flavor, I never use it in dessert making for that reason) or the actual VIA coffee itself that has a certain, am, chemically taste to it. Which is very weird as it says on the box it only contains natural flavorings. I’ll finish off a few more packs and see can I get into it! And yes Sarah is cool, I sent her a Germany mug and when I’m back home she might be getting a new Ireland mug too! lol ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. Jeff B September 9, 2011 at 17:39 #

    I agree when you add milk it makes a whole new taste. I need to drink at least 2 more packets to formulate a quality opinion. At first glass it had a very different taste than there Iced Coffee in the stores (but of course). So people expecting it to be the same will be very disappointed IMHO.

    Great review and love your blog.

    • StarbucksMarkDavid September 9, 2011 at 18:17 #

      Hi Jeff,

      Thanks for the comment! I was thinking the same, I really need to try a few more and see if I like them or not. I think a lot of the VIAs are like that, it’s very different from any kind of fresh espresso or something that most peoples palates are accustomed to. Lets hope our try’s go well! ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks again..

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