If you haven't yet heard about the cut-throat debate on whether Dunkin' Donuts' or Starbucks' coffee is better, there's a high chance that you might be living under a rock. Trust me, people, I know how important and life-altering this debate is. We all want to know what America's favorite coffee truly is. Some say Starbucks is better. Others say Dunkin' is better. You are all demanding answers and I am here to give them to you.
I figured the best way to figure this out is to decide all the pros and the cons of both establishments and then go from there.
Let's start with their menus. Both restaurants serve a variety of beverages, but Starbucks tends to be a bit more specific in their options. They have specific names for their beverages and are specified with certain flavors. In contrast, the Dunkin' Donuts menu is less specific and you have to add ingredients into your order for it to be made how you would like. My main point of reasoning for this is that it seems like more of a hassle to order at Dunkin' than it is at Starbucks. For example, let's say you just want to order a vanilla flavored latte. At Starbucks, you could easily just say, "I would like a Vanilla Latte", while at Dunkin you would have to order it as latte then specify that you would like either a vanilla flavor shot or a vanilla flavor swirl. Of course, if you're one of those bold people who like to drink black coffee, this isn't as much of an issue for you.
The next important thing to determine is the level of boldness you generally like to taste in your coffee. Some people love being able to taste the coffee, while others prefer to mask the taste. I personally have gotten coffee from both places multiple times and have concluded that Starbucks tends to have a bolder taste in their coffee. I'm the type of coffee drinker that drinks it for the caffeine, not the bold taste. So in this category, Dunkin' would get my vote. However, to those bold coffee-lovers out there, Starbucks is for you.
Pricing also serves as a giant piece of what pushes people through the doors of these two places. If you're looking for something cheap, Dunkin' is where it's at. Starbucks is much more expensive, as it's more mainstream. You can get a large iced coffee at Dunkin' for around $3, while at Starbucks it'd be close to $7 for a Venti. For some, money may not matter as much. However, for many of us on who are ballin' on a budget, we have to decide if we'd rather spend money on something large at Dunkin' or something small at Starbucks, and believe me people... size does matter.
Now when it comes to the holidays, coffee sales go through the roof. Starbucks is famous for their fall flavored favorites and warm Christmas coffees, as well as their stylish holiday cups that have evolved through the winters of the past two decades. Although when I think of the holidays, I think Starbs, I will still admit that Dunkin' is really starting to give them a run for their money. With their creations of fun winter flavors, like "Sugar Cookie Latte" or "Peppermint Mocha Coffee," and the display of their seasonal "Joy" cups in the winter, Dunkin' Donuts is on the rise to take over the holiday season.
Something that really differentiates Dunkin' Donuts and Starbucks from each other is their atmospheres. When you walk into a Dunkin', it is very minimalistic. It's more of an "order-and-go" type of place. There are usually a few tables, but it's not the type of place that makes you feel like you should stay and hang out for a while. On the other hand, Starbucks focuses more on making a place that customers want to lounge and enjoy their coffee in. They make it especially inviting to students by providing free Wi-Fi, playing soothing music that's perfect for studying and setting an overall chill-type of vibe.
Now that we've narrowed down the pros and cons of both places, it's time to narrow down which side of this great debate is better. It's the moment that you have all been waiting for...
When it comes down to the nitty-gritty, the best is decided by you. The argument of which one is "better" has no factually clear side and will continue to live on, as it all up to personal preference. No two taste buds are the same and hey if you're anything like me, you enjoy both for different reasons.
Despite the fact that there's no true conclusion to the debate, they are honestly both winning as they continue to dominate the coffee industry.