Last August I had a revelatory experience. A good friend, and Starbucks non-enthusiast, had accompanied me to the local ‘bucks to pick up a quick drink. I ordered my usual, reciting the string of descriptors with the greatest of ease. And she… well, she ordered something I had never heard of — an Iced Grande Dirty Chai.
I was floored. How had she gotten this intel? And how had it evaded me for so long? And man was this drink good.
Naturally, I began to wonder about the other off-the-menu items I had been missing out on, and how many there were. As it turned out, quite a lot. Green Eyes and Double-Dirty Chais, Zebra Mochas and Crunch Berry Frappuccinos — an entire "secret menu," revealed.
When I shared what I’d learned shortly thereafter, it sparked a flood of comments from fans and haters, former employees and current Starbucks baristas alike. Most were in fervent agreement about one particular point: These drinks and their oh-so-clever names are not universal, so if you’re planning on ordering one, you better know how to tell your barista to prepare it. (That, and to be prepared to pay a little extra for these special drinks.)
It’s a fair point. After all, as many eagerly noted, these drinks are largely the invention of customers and employees, and are not part of a widely recognized "secret menu" à la In-N-Out. And, as is common with this sort of word-of-mouth game, things tend to get lost in translation. One man’s zebra mocha is another’s black and white mocha, is another’s penguin mocha.
Still, an impressive number of commenters chimed in with their own creations, making for an intriguing list of additions. Read on to see what was shared — you might discover a new favorite drink.