Caffeine

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Starbucks announced the release of a new seasonal drink to kick off the holiday season: the chestnut praline latte. This festive drink, which is the coffee chain’s first holiday beverage in five years, will make its official debut nationwide on Nov. 12.

So, will this chestnut-flavored cup of joe finally take down the pumpkin spice latte as the top seasonal Starbucks beverage? Maybe, though the new latte will have to deal with competition from other Starbucks winter standbys like the gingerbread latte and the peppermint mocha latte. The whole seasonal drink trend might be partially due to the dip in foot traffic for Starbucks, as noted in a statement by CEO Howard Schultz.

Holiday 2013 witnessed a seismic shift in consumer behavior in which many traditional brick-and-mortar retailers experienced a decline in foot traffic compared to significant growth in online shopping… Since that time, we have been focused on radically redefining the Starbucks retail experience for our partners, customers and stores.

Ok, so they’re trying to lure us back with caffeinated holiday cheer. I’m on to you, Starbucks. You can’t buy my loyalty with chestnut praline, peppermint and pumpkin spice. Unless you combine those flavors? Try it. See what happens.

(via Mashable / Image via Esparta Palma)

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Do you know how to spell out “coffee” in binary code? I don’t. But I do know how to write the word “hot” in binary thanks to this awesome Hot Binary Heat Change Mug. When you heat up the mug, the binary for “hot” appears on the side. So, when the machines inevitably take over, you know how to say at least one thing to them. Good luck with that.

Check another pic after the break…

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It’s Monday morning and there’s no way you can face another week getting up for work. You need lots of caffeine and that’s just what this Giant Green Monster Fist will supply. It holds 32 ounces of coffee and will assure that no one will find you sleeping with your head on your desk before it’s even lunch.

Product Page ($9.95 via Greenhead)

mug

This 11 ounce mug will hold your favorite beverage and let you know when it’s time to refuel. When it’s full of something warm it reads “Ready Player One Start!” but when it’s cold or empty changes to “Game Over Refill? >Yes No” so you know when it’s time to reach into your pocket for quarters.

Product Page ($11.99)

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Artist Soo Min Kim uses his artistic skills to transform the iconic Starbucks siren into all kinds of different characters. He starts with an existing cup, covers up everything but the siren’s face and uses a marker to transform the cup into a piece of art. He’s turned the siren into Darth Vader, various members of the Avengers, and Psy among others. His work definitely makes me look at Starbucks cups differently.

See more pics and see the artist at work after the break.

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john oliver pumpkin spice

We all love John Oliver. I mean, the guy’s hilarious and his new show Last Week With John Oliver has been a hit for HBO. There’s no denying he’s brilliant.

But John may have just pushed it a bit too far. He’s going after America’s love for pumpkin spice and he’s not pulling any punches.

That said, he does make some valid points. I mean, pumpkin spice lattes do taste a bit candle-y.

Check out the video after the break.

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starbucks everywhere

If I’m in a new city and need coffee, I often turn to a chain of some kind unless I have a recommendation from a trusted friend. That usually means Starbucks. Winter likes checking out the local Starbucks too, so much so that he’s visited 11,733 of their locations around the world. That’s a special kind of dedication. To the list of locations that is, not so much the coffee.

He told The Telegraph that he’s spent over $100,000 checking out the various locations, and it all started in 1997 because he wanted to try and complete something unique. At the time, there were only about 1,400 stores. Now? There are over 17,000. So many zeroes.

Apparently, he drinks an average of ten cups of coffee a day, and while Winter is still on his quest to conquer all the Starbucks, he prefers to get coffee from an independent shop. Basically, he’s not getting coffee from Starbucks unless it’s a location he’s never been to before.

“I respect Starbucks for its business sense, customer service and amenities including clean bathrooms and WiFi,” he told The Telegraph. “But unless I am checking a new store off my list, I would not go there for the coffee.”

(via Consumerist, photo via Starbucks Everywhere)

space latte art

I treat every day like coffee day, but apparently National Coffee Day is a thing. It happened on September 29th, and even NASA found a way to join the celebration of caffeine. NASA’s Kennedy Space Center tweeted a photo of some spectacularly appropriate latte art and shared a link to an article that discusses how to make a decent cup of coffee in space.

(io9 via Boing Boing)

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Pumpkin Spice Lattes make life worth living every Fall, but if you live in Middle-Earth then you will never experience the joy of this delicious seasonal beverage. We know this thanks to Polygon writer Alexa Ray Corriea. She was playing Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor and swore she heard two Uruk-Hai talking about the drink. Her comments about this experience on twitter led to a response from Hidden Path Entertainment CEO Jeff Pobst who explained the lack of pumpkin. According to Polygon:

We had pumpkin patches in the Shire, and the Tolkien Enterprises people went nuts about it,” he said. Pumpkins, as it were, are a New World crop. Middle-earth is J.R.R. Tolkien’s vision of an ancient Europe, with the author going so far as to base his maps on the continent. Pumpkins are native to North America, therefore there’s no way they’d be growing organically in a fantastical take on ancient Europe.”

They weren’t kidding either, as the Tolkien folks also took issue with tomatoes in the 2003 title The Hobbit. The good people of Middle-Earth, sadly, never knew the joy of pumpkin anything. And no tomatoes? They didn’t have pizza either!

See the tweet after the break.

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These redone versions of the Starbucks mermaid come from redditor IHunt who got a little creative during his downtime at work. There’s Wolverine, Batgirl, and even a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle all created out of just the mermaid logo and a black marker.

See more pictures after the break.

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