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What’s the difference between a ‘brewed’ drink and ‘handcrafted’ drink at Starbucks?

By MixDex Article may include affiliate links

Starbucks classifies its beverage offerings into two broad categories — “brewed” and “handcrafted.”

  • Brewed beverages are typically defined as either tea or coffee drinks without any other ingredients added other than any sweeteners or creamers.
  • Handcrafted beverages, meanwhile, are generally defined as more complex drinks such lattes, limited time specials or that have flavoring, lemonade or other juice, toppings or other items added.
  • Other handcrafted beverages include blended drinks such as Frappuccinos.
  • Handcrafted drinks typically have additional ingredients or preparation steps that are done behind the counter.

  • Creamer alternatives such as coconut or soy milk are not considered “free” and adding these to a brewed beverage is done at an extra charge. However, this can be done to a brewed beverage without it becoming “handcrafted.”
  • These categories are especially important with the updated Starbucks Rewards program that specifies different point values for these types of drinks.
  • However, note that drive thru orders are not eligible for free refills.