Des Moines: Fall Drinks Guide in DSM Girl!

mug of cafe latte

Hey, Central Iowa! DSM Girl and I teamed up for a Guide to Fall Drinks around Des Moines! Please give it a read, share it, and let them know if you liked the piece! You can always comment too!

If you like my food writing, stop back here every Friday for The Unparalleled Flotsam and Jetsam. It’s got national food news, links to food holiday discounts, and Des Moines food news too!

We might have a winter drinks guide coming early next year, so let me know what you want to see on there!

Bonus: Reviews!

I’ve visit nine local and national places for this year’s pumpkin fix, and I’ve got six more on my list to try. Here’s what I’ve tried and my thoughts:

  • Blue Bean: Jack-o-Chai
    • It wasn’t unpleasant. In fact, it was pretty cozy. That said, I’m not sure it tasted like pumpkin or chai. It was very caramel forward.
  • Caribou Coffee: Pumpkin Chai
    • Here’s another one that tasted like neither chai nor pumpkin, but I can’t pinpoint what it tasted like. I don’t think I’ll be repeating a visit there.
  • Dunkin‘: Pumpkin donut and Pumpkin Spice Signature Latte (decaf)
    • They were OK. That’s it. That’s the whole review.
  • Krispy Kreme: All the pumpkin donuts
    • Holy fucking sugar. I have an intense sweet tooth, but standard Krispy Kreme donuts are too sweet for me. These were on another level. I had to scrape off some of the icing from the pumpkin cheesecake one.
  • Lucky Lotus: Pumpkin rangoonies and pumpkin Thai tea (in theory)
    • We make it a point to visit Lucky Lotus for pumpkin rangoonies. They are delightful, especially when hot and fresh. I adore their pumpkin Thai tea, but they were out of the pumpkin when we visited. I still recommend it, and I plan to pop in during the week to snag one.
  • Mayalu Coffee: Nothing, however . . .
    • I went to Mayalu to give it a first try, but it was too late in the afternoon for me to do caffeine. That said, I plan to swing by the drive-through early next week because their chai was DIVINE. Best in Des Moines so far.
  • Porch Light Coffeehouse: Caramel Apple Chai
    • I’m not sure if my tastes changed or if they changed their chai, but I didn’t enjoy this as much this year. I’ve gotten in the last few years at least. It seems they changed their chai, and they switched to a chai that I very much dislike. More on that in a moment.
  • Scooter’s: Pumpkin chai
    • Even though their chai is not all that authentic, Scooter’s chai was the first chai I ever tried. I’ve been getting their pumpkin chai every fall. Sometimes, they put WAY too much pumpkin in it, so be cautious and take a sip before you driveaway. It might be unpalatable.
  • Starbucks: PSL (decaf)
    • You can’t beat the original. I go to Starbys maybe four times a year, and this is the only time I’m guaranteed to go. It remains perfect.
  • Twisted Bean: Pumpkin chai
    • Like PorchLight, Twisted Bean (and Smokey Row) use a chai powder that, in my opinion, is terrible. Plus, the caffeine content is atrocious. It gives me hardcore jitters. I didn’t finish this one, which is almost unheard of when it come to chai.
  • Wendy’s: Pumpkin frosty
    • Damn! I was stunned at how good this was! I hope they bring it back next year.

Still to come hopefully: 7 Brew’s pumpkin chai, Hyper Energy Bar’s chai chai again, ChaCha’s Hiland Bakery’s caramel apple cider, Reading in Public’s caramel apple chai, Sweet Dude’s PSL, Vibrant Coffee House’s honey vanilla chai, banana bread chai, and s’mores latte.

How about you, Des Moines? What fall drinks are you enjoying, and where must I visit before the season is up?

Don’t forget to check out the piece in DSM Girl!

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