Starbucks Espresso Christmas Blend – Did we enjoy it or should we pass this year?

Throughout our travels we find we drink a lot of coffee from many different places. Every place has a preferred bean or drink or mix of drinks that the locals feel is better than the rest. It may just be because the locals love the owners which can have a lasting effect on a cup of coffee’s taste. Others have beans they mix to their own special family recipe, though we always wonder how many generations has been importing beans from a particular mountain’s growing fields. No matter the reason for the provider’s labeling of their signature drink, it is important to remember a few key fact because we may be coming back this way in the future. There is nothing worse than settling down for a relaxing cappuccino to remember the second sip in why you didn’t enjoy the drink last time.

Being a self labeled ‘geek’ family, we turned to our mobile devices and set up a little database to track what was good and what was not. Using a simple app, Bento, we are able to make quick notations about the location and what we liked and didn’t like. The next time through, a quick search reminds us if we should grab the special or make an excuse for the daily grind. Using this solution does mean we are dealing with basic pull downs and boxes for entry, with very little effort we were able to sync across all of the family mobile devices so the knowledge is shared.

When talking about the Starbucks ‘Espresso’ Christmas Blend in this mornings espresso, we thought about the need for something a bit more ‘nice to look at’ and graphical that anyone could just load and use. A quick search and we found Coffee Cellar. An app for the iPone and iPad that lets you quickly name a drink, assign an icon to remember the drink by later and then rate via sliders what your tasting results where. Currently there isn’t any way to note a location so the app is really best to use with beans you bought and are using at home. Maybe it will work with something like the FourSquare app in the future. We do like how fast it is to rate a drink then find it later though.

Back to Starbucks Espresso Christmas Blend – this is different from their normal holiday red bag Christmas Blend, most noticeable by it’s purple bag. The beans? A strong smell from the grinder let us know this wasn’t a coffee bean, and it is truly a espresso mix. The taste is not bitter, though there is a burnt taste that lingers after drinking in the back of our mouths. Not a bad experience at all, but much different from the year round Starbucks Espresso coffee option. Very enjoyable as a seasonal treat, though marked in our log as not an every day drink. We like to keep the unique spoils of particular blends for an occasion rather otherwise we might be setting our standards too high for the small stand on the corner and their great grandmother’s secret bean mix.