Move over Trenta, the next Starbucks size rage is the ten ounce Mini. This tiny little drink is currently being tested at a number of locations on the West Coast, starting in San Diego and at a few cafes in Denver and Houston as well. The little guy was first spotted by coffee obsessed blogger Starbucks Melody, who noted this size offers less variety than others, "Unlike other Frappuccinos, it appears, as far as I can see, a little less customizable than others. At least the booklet, which introduces customers to this new item, seems to suggest that you have a limited list of flavors/ recipes to choose from."
At ten ounces, the Mini is just two ounces smaller than the Tall. Melody notes that Starbucks has attempted a ten ounce drink twice before: once in Japan for cold drinks and long ago for the Sorbetto.
Lisa Passe, a Starbucks spokesperson, told USA Today, "It's about customers looking for choices. We're learning and listening to what customers are saying." This drink gives the customer a number of choices: less calories, less money and less brain freeze. The frappuccino is a relatively heavy drink (I have never actually managed to finish one) so at ten ounces, less of it would go to waste.
The health aspect is not lost on Starbucks. When they launched the Trenta, some customers pushed for a 31 ounce Frappuccino, but Passe said, "That (size is) only for iced tea and Refreshers." A whole milk, caramel flavored trenta (with whip) would be about 800 calories (closer to 600 without whip.)
Instead, they are pushing more for a custom ordering options that make the frap less calorific. There are about 36,000 different combinations to choose from, which include five milk options and countless syrup options, plus with or without whipped cream. Nonetheless, the lowest calorie frappuccino still broke 200 calories (the Tall Caramel Light.) Now at ten ounces, the Mini is estimated to be about 154 calories, a healthier alternative.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.