Starbucks Christmas Blend: The story behind the beloved holiday brew
As Starbucks celebrates its 50th anniversary this year, we take a look back at one of its most beloved coffees, Starbucks Christmas Blend.
Before Peppermint Mocha, before red holiday cups – there was Christmas Blend. This beloved holiday coffee was Introduced in 1984, back when Starbucks had only five locations in Seattle and they didn't sell drinks and food, just whole bean coffee, tea and spices. The new coffee blend showcased Starbucks artistry in roasting and blending with an expert combination of lively Latin American beans and mellow Indonesian coffees. The finishing touch was the addition of rare, spicy Sumatra beans that were painstakingly aged for three to five years for a full-bodied, spicy and rich cup of coffee.
Customers quickly snapped up the hand-scooped bags of Christmas Blend, and the air in stores was soon filled with the roasty-sweet aroma of Christmas Blend. The roasting plant ramped up production, as more and more shipments arrived each morning to meet the growing demand, their white metal bins still warm from the fresh-roasted beans inside.
Ever since that very first holiday, Christmas Blend has become a cherished part of the holidays, whether it’s shared around a table or given as a perfectly wrapped gift. Its legacy continues with this year’s vintage, created by Starbucks team of expert coffee developers to honor its rich heritage while bringing in new coffees from Latin America, Africa and Indonesia and considering brewing methods such as iced and cold brew.
All of Starbucks coffees are made with 100% arabica coffee, verified as ethically sourced by Coffee and Farmer Equity (C.A.F.E.) Practices. Here are the holiday coffees you can enjoy this year from Starbucks – with that warmth, that spice, and that richness you have come to love:
This year’s Starbucks® Christmas Blend features aged Sumatra blended with dark-roasted beans from Papua New Guinea, Guatemala and Colombia. With notes of herbs, baking spices and a chocolate finish, every sip of this flavor-rich coffee is an invitation to feel the wonder and warmth of the season.
Available in Starbucks stores as whole bean, decaf, and Starbucks VIA® Instant.
Decaf Christmas Blend
Decaf Christmas Blend shares the flavors and heart of Christmas Blend. The blend, inspired by our 1984 recipe, has all the original sweetness and spice. Dark-roasted beans from Latin America and Indonesia come together to highlight the rare aged Sumatra. Notes of herbs, baking spices and a velvety, rich chocolate finish will fill your cup with festivity.
Available in Starbucks stores.
Starbucks Holiday Blend
For those who love an elegantly balanced cup of coffee, Starbucks® Holiday Blend is just the right combination of sweet and toasty notes. This seasonal blend combines bright Latin American beans with rich Sumatran coffee – roasted to bring out its complex flavor – offering notes of subtle herbs and smooth maple sweetness.
Available as whole bean coffee at Starbucks stores. Also available (in festive red packaging) in grocery locations in ground, K-Cup*, Nespresso and Starbucks VIA® formats.
Starbucks Reserve Christmas 2021
Roasted with care at Starbucks Reserve® Roastery locations, Starbucks Reserve™ Christmas is a vibrant, modern expression of the holiday, with savory spice notes and a bright sweetness. This year’s Starbucks Reserve® Christmas brings you a blend of three remarkable coffees: Hacienda Alsacia® from Starbucks farm in Costa Rica, joins rare aged Sumatra and coffee from the Aceh region of Indonesia to create a savory spice and sweet brightness for the holidays.
Available at Starbucks Reserve Roastery locations and select locations in the United States and Canada.
Starbucks VIA Instant Christmas Blend
Starbucks VIA® Instant Christmas Blend with all the original sweetness and spice. Dark-roasted beans from Latin America and Indonesia come together to highlight the rare aged Sumatra that is the hero of the cup. With notes of baking spices and a velvety, rich chocolate finish will fill your cup with festivity.
Available in Starbucks stores.
* Keurig, K-Cup, and the K logo are trademarks of Keurig Green Mountain, Inc., used with permission.