Statesbuds: Ranking best mint drinks


Artwork by Daniel Valentine, Canva & Canva/Ellette Lorelei

Surprisingly, there are not a lot of mint or “shamrock” drinks sold around town, despite the flavor being a staple in March.

Daniel Valentine, Staff Writer

March is the month of green and Irish patron saints, so what better way to celebrate this month than with mint drinks (which may or may not be colored green)? I’ll be reviewing two shakes and two different mint coffees based on flavor. 


Starting with a classic, McDonald’s Shamrock shakes will always be the default for mint in my mind. These shakes have always been my favorite seasonal item at Mickey D’s but they’re hard for me to rate positively, even though I want to. The intensity of the mint flavoring seems to vary from shake to shake, as the syrup-to-ice cream ratio appears to fluctuate. And in my opinion, they taste like low-quality spearmint or bad toothpaste, if that makes any sense. While I’ll be drinking this flavor again, I give it a 1/5. 


Arby’s has a different seasonal take on mint, with its limited edition Andes mint chocolate shake. The first problem I noticed about this shake is that it is insanely thick. Its consistency is less akin to that of a malt and more like that of a blizzard from Dairy Queen. I would recommend either letting this shake melt before enjoying it or straight up getting a wider straw. Ultimately, this did put a damper on how much I enjoyed this shake. It is a really good shake flavor-wise; the chocolate components complement the mint well, and the mint takes on a good amount of intensity as the main flavor. The drizzle paired with the mint crumbles makes this shake an absolute delight if you can get past how much of a chore it is to get the drink through the straw. I give it a 3/5.


Starbucks’ peppermint mocha is a year-round drink that apparently isn’t ordered that often, according to my barista at a local store. This drink is certainly pepperminty and stands out from the rest of the drinks on this list for its intensity of flavor. I attribute this to the fact that it is made of a peppermint base versus the spearmint featured in every other drink. I had this drink iced, but it’s pretty easy to imagine how a warm drink would compliment the notes of mint, perhaps subduing its intensity to a more manageable level. All in all, this drink pairs well with the snow that persists on the ground in mid-March. I give it a 2/5.


Moving into a drink that is only served hot, Caribou’s mint condition. While it’s not exactly in the same category as the other cold drinks on this list, I think it’s only fair to give something hot a shot at being rated. I really liked this drink! The warmth of the drink compliments the mint beautifully, and the mint isn’t overwhelming in any way. I’m not usually a sucker for warm beverages, but I don’t think this drink would work as well as it does if it were iced or blended. It also has mint crumbles sprinkled on which adds a good texture to the drink. It’s absolutely my favorite on this list, so I’m giving it a 5/5.