Multinational coffeehouse chain Starbucks added the 100-percent vegan “Pink Drink”—a coconut milk-based refresher with freeze dried strawberries—to its official menu. The phenomenon began last year when customers began to order the Strawberry Açai Refresher, but with coconut milk instead of water, to produce the creamy pink hue. The customized drink became an Instagram sensation, amassing over 100,000 posts in a matter of months. The drink became one of the most popular items on a purported “secret menu” created by rogue baristas (including VegNews’ own Richard Bowie) and innovative customers. “This delicious and refreshing drink is a celebration of our customers’ and baristas’ creativity and is just one of the 170,000 ways we craft beverages to meet each person’s unique taste preferences,” Starbucks’ vice president Vivienne Long said. After its successful launch of almond milk in stores nationwide last year, Starbucks recently debuted a vegan breakfast option (grains soaked overnight in coconut milk) and is testing its first prepared vegan lunch option—the Cauliflower Tabouli Salad—on menus in 100 Chicago locations.
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