We know it’s not for everyone, but when Starbucks announced that, they would no longer serve their infamous love-it-or-hate-it ‘Pumpkin Spice Latte’ in the Middle East, it felt personal. In a year plagued by locusts, fires, and a pandemic, the loss of that sweet pumpkin spice latte was the last straw.
We suffer happily through the long, hot summer because we know we will be rewarded with a wonderful, envy-inducing winter and spring. But it doesn’t mean that those nostalgic memories of colder climates don’t still surface from time to time: the changing of colors in the leaves, sweaters, boots, scarves, sitting around a fire, and of course, pumpkin everything. So that little pumpkin spice latte once a year was just the fix we needed when we missed home, and ironically kept us from making the horrible decision of leaving the perfect weather for months of freezing cold.
However, in true Dubai fashion, some coffee shops have stepped up, gotten a hold of the desired ingredients, and rewarded those of us who need that fix for more than just a hit of caffeine, with delicious sip of fall in a cup.
Yes, ‘Habib-tea’. It’s true. The adorable little coffee shop in Jumeirah, Tania’s Teahouse, has concocted a mixture of all the fall spices for a delicious new Pumpkin Spice Latte. Mixing pumpkin, apple, cinnamon, cardamon, ginger, cloves, nutmeg, and a few other secret ingredients that are all natural and don’t include sugar, they deliver up a PSL that will transport you to your front porch on a cool night overlooking hills of red, yellow, and orange colored trees.
Also, don’t forget to snap a photo for the gram as Tania’s Teahouse is the 7th most instagrammable cafe in the world.
London Dairy Cafe
For an alternative take on the PSL, try London Dairy Cafe’s ‘Fall Spice Latte’ – or as they call it, a ‘hug in a mug’. It’s got all the good stuff like pumpkin puree, frothed milk, allspice, nutmeg, and cinnamon, and can be made vegan if that’s the way you take your coffee. They may even let you have take it decaf, but that might be pushing it too far.
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Media One Hotel
Media One’s M12Go means you can waltz up to the hotel’s coffee bar on the ground floor and order yourself all the fall feels to go. And at only AED 15 a pop, you might as well grab two and make your neighbor’s day. Or freeze it and eat it as a popsicle later while you binge Christmas movies after work.
There are worse places to enjoy your pumpkin spice latte, but Revo Cafe in the Anantara Hotel – preferably sitting by the pool and looking out over the sea – pretty much tops them all. Just imagine. You close your eyes with a cup of pumpkin spice latte in your hands as you inhale the aroma of cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and cream. Then you open your eyes and see the sparkling sea and beach as your toes dip in the chilled pool while the warm breeze ruffles your hair. You put that magical frappuccino (because they offer it whipped up warm or cold) to your lips and you live your best life straddling both worlds. We’ll see you there.
No, that’s not a new coffeeshop in town. That’s literally your own house. Lockdown taught us that we can get creative and make bread everyday from scratch. Why not create your favorite autumn cuppa at home as well? All you’ll need is:
- Coffee (duh) – 2 shots of espresso or 1/2 cup strongly brewed coffee
- 2 tablespoons pumpkin puree
- 1 tablespoon sugar – can substitute sweetener or just leave it out
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- 3/4 cup whole milk – or coconut, almond, oat, or any other milk substitute
- In a medium size pan whisk together the milk, pumpkin puree, sugar, vanilla and spice. Heat it on the stove, watch closely, and remove it when the milk is hot and frothy. Pour the pumpkin milk into a tall mug or glass. Add hot coffee and stir. You can use whipped cream on the top and a sprinkle of nutmeg. Enjoy immediately.