Starbucks winter blend vs. French roast: Which One is better?

I have found the purchase of different Starbucks roast immensely confusing to most buyers. When I get torn between two roasts, I analyze each at a time and see what carries the day. I have come up with this post to give you a clear comparison of the winter and French roasts. By the end of this read, you should have an easy time shopping for your home coffee blend.

What are the differences between Starbucks winter blend vs. French Roast


Winter Roast

French Roast


Coffee Arabica beans from Latin America and Asia/Pacific Region

Coffee Arabic from Latin America

Taste Profile

Earthy, nutty, rich taste

smoky taste with notes of sweet caramel

Caffeine/Nutritional Value

Caffeine 190mg per 8 fluid ounces, 0 calories, 0 fat, 0 proteins

130mg per 8 fluid ounces, 2 calories, 0 fat, 0.3g proteins

Accessibility/ Availability


Available all year round

Roast Level

Medium Roast

Dark Roast

Starbucks winter blend vs. French Roast- How they compare

Starbucks winter blend vs. French roast

What’s it’s made of (Ingredients)

The winter blend is 100% coffee Arabica beans from Latin America with a blend of Asia Pacific beans to add depth and flavor. The French Roast is also 100% Arabica coffee beans from Latin America and is roasted to the darkest roast at Starbucks.

In this one, the winter blend takes an early lead as it blends beans from the best coffee in the world.

Taste Profile

The Winter blend has earthy notes with a rich, nutty taste. Your first sip will be met by a strong flavor that awakens your taste buds, and fades into a pleasant, full-bodied texture as you continue to sip. The French roast has a smoky, caramel sweetness taste, with earthy tones that are on the verge of tasting burnt, but not getting there.

While both have a strong coffee taste, the French roasts take this one due to their complex bittersweet flavor that leaves one yearning for more.

Caffeine content/ Nutritional Value

The winter coffee blend has no calories, sugar, fat, or carbs. The coffee has nothing except caffeine which is 190mg per short serving. The French roast has 2 calories and 0.3g of protein. It has no sugar, fats, or carbs. A short serving of the French roast will give you a caffeine boost of 130mg.

The French roast carries the day with its moderate caffeine and its 2 calories. The body needs calories for energy, and while both of them are short on calories, the French roast has 2, which is good.


The winter blend is a seasonal winter roast. The French roast is available all year round. You will find it in your grocery store at any time of the year.

The French roast takes the lead on availability and accessibility as you can have it whenever you want all year round, unlike the winter blend that is only accessible in winter.

Roast Level

The winter blend is a medium roast. This means that it takes moderate time in the roaster before it is ready for consumption. The French roast is the darkest roast at Starbucks. This means it takes the longest time to roast, which makes it very dark, with a smoky, intense taste.

On the roast level, the winter takes the lead as most people despise the intense flavor and pungent smell of the French roast.

Starbucks winter blend vs. French Roast: A comparison review.

Starbucks winter blend overview

Starbucks winter blend

I recently went to the grocery store and got myself the winter blend to see what it’s all about. I was impressed by the low acidity and a strong, yet tolerable flavor of this blend. Medium roasts are great for espresso lattes and anything espresso, and this coffee blend did not disappoint. The caffeine boost was nothing short of great.

What I liked

  • The caffeine boost
  • The moderately strong taste

What I didn’t like

  • It’s a seasonal blend

Who it’s best suited for

  • Its best suited for coffee lovers who like moderate coffee flavors.

Starbucks French Roast Overview

Starbucks winter blend vs. French roast

The French roast is the darkest roast in Starbucks. When I got it, I had mixed feelings and wondered if it would taste burnt. However, I loved how strong and precise the flavor was, and how it toned down to a caramel sweetness. I made espresso and loved how it blended with milk and other additives without concealing the coffee taste. However, it had a strong smell which was overbearing for me. The acid was low and the caffeine was moderate.

What I liked

  • The low acidity
  • The bittersweet flavor

What I didn’t like

  • The pungent smell

Who it’s best suited for

  • This roast works best for those who like coffee in the strongest flavor.

Final Verdict: So, which is better? Starbucks winter blend or French roast?

The French roast is better than the winter blend. It is intense in flavor with a complex sweetness, is available all year, and works best with milk and other additives without concealing the taste of coffee.


Is winter blend stronger than French roast?

No, the French roast is more intense in flavor.

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