New York University's independent student newspaper, established in 1973.

Washington Square News

New York University's independent student newspaper, established in 1973.

Washington Square News

New York University's independent student newspaper, established in 1973.

Washington Square News

Pumpkin perk-fection: The best pumpkin spice drinks near campus

It’s time to explore beyond the Starbucks pumpkin spice latte. Check out these close-to-campus cafes for some new spins on this classic fall-flavored drink.
Kiran Komanduri
Coffee shops around New York City are bringing Pumpkin Spice Lattes back to their menus. (Kiran Komanduri for WSN)

As much as I love Starbucks’ fall-themed drinks, their prices — and excessive lines — have forced me to branch out. Luckily enough, there are plenty of other coffee shops around campus offering pumpkin-flavored drinks, and even expanding their fall menu to include other seasonal flavors. Instead of waiting 20 minutes in line at the West 4th Street Starbucks, shake up your morning routine and try these alternatives.

La Colombe

400 Lafayette St., New York, NY 10003

A plastic cup with a blue sleeve holding iced coffee sits on a wooden table next to a small white plate with a metal spoon resting on it.
(Qianshan Weng for WSN)

La Colombe’s velvety draft lattes have jacked up the coffee roasters’ popularity, and the fall rendition of their signature drink is a must-try this season. The lusciously creamy iced draft latte subtly emulates the consistency of a Starbucks cold foam and is only made better with the addition of pumpkin spice offering a sweet, warm flavor. And if nitro lattes aren’t your thing, La Colombe allows customers to add a shot of pumpkin syrup to any drink, so regardless of whether or not you check out their draft latte, be sure to stop by for a pumpkin drink of your choosing. 


67 University Place, New York, NY 10003

A hand holding a plastic cup of ice coffee with a white wavy design across the top of the cup that reads 'maman.' In the background is a blue and white storefront.
(Kiran Komanduri for WSN)

For all the self-proclaimed pumpkin spice lovers out there, Maman has you covered. Whether you want a pumpkin pie latte, pumpkin chai or a pumpkin milk dark hot chocolate, Maman has pumpkin-themed drinks for days. Pair your drink of choice with one of their seasonal pastries — the apple cinnamon swiss croissant, vanilla caramel croissant roll, or the oatmeal pumpkin chai cookie — and get cozy by enjoying the cafe’s whimsical cottage-like ambiance.

Think Coffee

248 Mercer St., New York, NY 10012

A white brick storefront with a lit up sign across the top reading “Think Coffee.”
(Cyan Prudhomme for WSN)

Conveniently located near the Paulson Center and Bobst Library, Think Coffee is a staple study spot for NYU students. This fall, the cafe’s seasonal menu offers a wide variety of drinks, from fall cider to a brown sugar pumpkin latte. The brown sugar syrup in the brown sugar pumpkin latte adds a toasted sweetness to the latte, curtailing some of the pumpkin flavor to make for a comforting drink. As for the fall cider, the combination of chai, apple cider, elderflower and vanilla makes the drink an interesting take on a classic fall cider. As for the salted caramel latte, the drink’s tinge of sea salt combines sweet and savory to perfection. Don’t forget to also grab one of Think Coffee’s vegan pumpkin muffins for a snack in between classes as a perfect complement to any of the fall drinks. 

Blank Street Coffee

688 Broadway, New York, NY 10012

A plastic cup of ice coffee, with ‘BLANK,’ written on it in white letters. There is a glass window behind the cup and through the glass is the inside of a coffee shop.
(Darryl Linardi for WSN)

This fall at Blank Street, it’s hot or iced pumpkin spice and everything nice! Blank Street has been caffeinating NYU students since 2020 with several locations across the East Village. It’s serving up a classic pumpkin spice latte this season while also introducing a new shaken pumpkin cold brew. Made with your choice of milk, shots of cold brew concentrate, pumpkin spice flavoring and a generous topping of cinnamon, Blank Street’s pumpkin cold brew is the perfect drink to get you into a fall festive mood.

Whistle & Fizz

254 Greene St., New York, NY 10003

One ice coffee and one hot coffee next to each other on a brown table, with a plant to the right of them.
(Julia Smerling for WSN)

Conveniently located in the middle of campus on Greene Street, Whistle & Fizz has an extensive collection of fall drinks. Their seasonal menu features some notable highlights, including the Choco Lantern Latte — a swirled pumpkin pie drink with slight additions of chocolate — and the classics, including a Pumpkin Spiced Latte and a Ginger & Brown Sugar Latte. For those looking for something more refreshing, Whistle & Fizz has put a seasonal spin on their “fizz” drinks — try the Spiced Apple Fizz or a Caramel Apple Fizz, perfect for a refreshing fall drink.

The list could go on and on, but for the sake of your time and your wallet, we’ll call it here. As Halloween approaches and the second round of midterms sneaks up on you, stay caffeinated with a non-Starbucks fall-flavored latte.

Contact Jules Hasler at [email protected].

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About the Contributors
Julia Smerling
Julia Smerling, Photo Editor
Julia Smerling is a first-year studying photography and imaging, and is one of WSN’s Photo Editors. She is from West Palm Beach, Florida, and you can find her writing poetry, overly obsessing about films, painting art on jeans and always having her headphones on. Also, she’s secretly Peter Parker. You can reach her on Instagram @juliasmerling or her art account @jul3sarchive (where mostly her mom hypes her up and likes her posts so please give it a look — it's becoming embarrassing at this point.)
Qianshan Weng
Qianshan Weng, Multimedia Editor
Qianshan Weng is a junior studying Media, Culture and Communication and Journalism. You may pronounce his name as "chi''en-shan", or, if it makes your life easier, just call him "Ben." He grew up in Shenzhen, China, and has spent the last five years or so saying that he wants to learn Cantonese. The answers to the questions "when will he finally start?" and "why is this taking him so long?" remain mysteries, even to himself. You can reach out to him at [email protected]

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