So I figure what better place to start than the place that brought blended coffee awesomeness to the masses?
When things were going a little better, economy-wise, I used to get breakfast at Whataburger and coffee drinks from Starbucks for some of my co-workers. The coffee order was invariably more expensive than the food order. Say what you will about Starbucks, but no one can deny they have changed the way most of us think about the price of coffee. And they've caused us to lose all self-consciousness stemming from using ridiculous words instead of small, medium, and large. Bravo.
Maybe this is just my inner snob talking, but I swear I can taste the difference between the actual Starbucks store drinks and the grocery store Starbucks kiosk drinks. Okay, maybe that's not true. I think it mostly has to do with the barista (another word we probably only use because Starbucks is a thing). I particularly like it when it's blended evenly and there are no chunks of ice remaining that clog the straw.
Though my blended coffee awesomeness experience varies, and it's a little more expensive than some of the other options, part of the appeal of the Caramel Frappuccino is the options and add-ons. 2% (or skim milk) instead of whole milk, extra coffee, a shot (or shots) of espresso...if you're into that sort of thing. While I sometimes go for the extra coffee or espresso, I always opt for no whipped cream. I figure it's an easy way to get rid of a few calories, and it tends to make the drink neater.
Starbucks has a certain romanticism about it. Why do I get the urge to read a book at Starbucks instead of the comfort of my own home? I have no idea.