Dallas, USA - November 18, 2014: A cup of Starbucks popular holiday beverage, peppermint mocha, displayed with coffee beans and candy canes on wooden table.
The Origin Story Behind Starbucks' Adored Peppermint Mocha
The Starbucks Peppermint Mocha is beloved among Starbucks fans as it marks the start of the holidays, but many are unaware of the drink’s origin.
Peter Dukes, the product manager for Starbucks espresso beverages, joined the company in 2001 and helped develop the Peppermint Mocha, which debuted in 2002.
Dukes said, "Customers' understanding of espresso and lattes was really in its infancy. I think [a holiday beverage] was a good introduction for a lot of people back then."
Since then, the Peppermint Mocha recipe has remained basically unchanged. The biggest difference is that it used to be topped with red sprinkles instead of dark chocolate curls.