Saturday 18 August 2018

Starbucks and blandness are taste of future

Our Instagram generation lacks uniqueness and gets off on being just like all their friends

Caffeine hit: American coffee house chain Starbucks last week announced its latest release, the Pumpkin Spice Latte
Caffeine hit: American coffee house chain Starbucks last week announced its latest release, the Pumpkin Spice Latte

Ciara O'Connor

Last week, Starbucks enraged us all by confirming they're opening another one of their identikit shops in Dublin city centre. The small independent cafes of the capital hit back against the aggressive banality of the American chain by handing out free coffees last Tuesday, a plaintive cry into the corporate abyss of the high street, a reminder they existed.

The announcement came at a good time for the caffeine Goliath - it was the same week they released their annual 'Pumpkin Spice Latte' to shrieks of girly joy the world over. The PSL is a milky coffee with cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and cloves - or thereabouts. And lots and lots of sugar. There's not actually any pumpkin involved.

The Americans, of course, have decided it's the quintessential taste of autumn ­- I suppose it's better than the bittersweet cocktail of resignation and relief that we have traditionally associated with the end of the summer holidays. It's Starbucks which has bamboozled an entire generation into believing that a cup of this truly ghastly stuff is as integral to September as new school shoes and the cuts they leave on your ankles.

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