Culture

Starbucks Released A Coquito Frappuccino For The Holidays And Some People Are Very Mad About It

@LatinoBoxSports / Twitter

Starbucks loves to make season drinks because, well, they sell. The pumpkin spice latte has transcended the regular life of a coffee beverage and has become a cultural phenomenon that won’t end. The unicorn frappuccino is another example of Starbucks using their reach and money to create timely and quickly forgotten drinks to follow trends. Now, there is a coquito frappuccino that has left the internet divided. Some people are excited to see their culture reach new heights while others can’t wait for it to be over.

This is typically how we are used to seeing coquito.

CREDIT: @lala / Twitter

Either your abuela and tías make it for the family or there is one specific brand that is always bought around this time of year. No matter how it is made or purchased it is always cradled lovingly in your abuela’s arms when you first get to her house for Christmas.

Now, Starbucks is getting in on the trend.

CREDIT: @Starbucks / Twitter

We don’t know how long it will last but the drin is being made by name in the Starbucks’ in Puerto Rico. There are ways to order the drink on the mainland but you have to come prepared with a list of ingredients.

The only online proof of this beverage is in this sign.

CREDIT: @Darleen42499267 / Twitter

The photo has gone viral with people retweeting and sharing the image at lightning speed. Some people are super stoked to get a chance to let their culture shine. Others are over the capitalistic nature of Starbucks using their culture.

Gentrification has been a major issue raised by those bothered by this drink.

CREDIT: @call_me_lexxi / Twitter

The drink is similar to their eggnog frappuccino just with some coconut added to imitate the flavor of coquito.

There are people we are delighted that their proud Puerto Rican culture is being celebrated.

CREDIT: @candace_pedraza / Twitter

Starbucks has publicly acknowledged that they wanted to change their image since the pumpkin spice latte has been deemed super basic. This is a start in that campaign to be more than just basic drinks for basic people.

A few Puerto Ricans on Twitter quickly mocked those who were so upset about the drink.

CREDIT: @morrisseysucks / Twitter

It really isn’t offensive for someone to make foods inspired by different cultures. Fusion cuisines exist because people feel an appreciation to the foods and look to make them as delicious as they can.

A whole other sector is just straight up laughing at the idea.

CREDIT: @AverageGirlT / Twitter

It is pretty interesting that the coquito drink would be available in Puerto Rico where you can get real coquito anywhere. When will the drink come to New York for the Puerto Rican community living there?

Some of the Puerto Rican diasporas is even asking that Starbucks expand the flavor.

CREDIT: @jetwithjen / Twitter

Understandable. There is a huge Puerto Rican population in Orlando and those people would probably love the idea of a nice coquito frappuccino on the way to work.

Starbucks is still testing the Puerto Rican market.

CREDIT: @Starbucks / Twitter

We have no idea how successful it is and we can’t seem to find any promotional material online. If it is successful, however, we need this on the mainland ASAP.

Let me tell you the ingredients for Starbucks coquito.

CREDIT: @MisterrPenguin / Twitter

It’s white mocha syrup and coconut syrup with a sprinkle of cinnamon on top. It’s not close to the real coquito but when you produce things in mass without the culture nuances, this is what it look like.

Many people are asking where the rum at?

CREDIT: @marielaregal / Twitter

The reason we all love coquito so much is because it kicks off the party. Obviously, Starbucks won’t be selling boozy coquito but the people can dream, right?

Some people are truly torn over the drink.

CREDIT: @WinkWinkWinki / Twitter

Tourists may have a coquito frappuccino to taste the famous drink instead of buying it from a local vendor. People might argue that it’s a money-making gimmick but some people might really appreciate the idea.

The vast majority of dissenters are asking if the cultural appropriation will benefit anyone besides Starbucks.

CREDIT: @beatzmarz / Twitter

Seems like it might be a good idea to tie this into the relief efforts in Puerto Rico since the island is still recovering and it is Christmas.

Starbucks did send some relief to Puerto Rico to help the farmers.

CREDIT: @ashleymwlopez / Twitter

Apparently, they donated 2 million coffee seeds to Puerto Rican farmers and helped sponsor the Somos benefit initiated by Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony. That’s truly wonderful, and it’s important to highlight when corporations give back to the communities that helped build them up.

They claim the seeds they gave were non-GMO.

CREDIT: @TainoAnomaly / Twitter

Starbucks donated 2 million seeds to coffee farmers throughout the island to help restart the coffee growing industry on the island. They have also partnered with World Coffee Research to enhance the quality of coffee beans produced in Puerto Rico.

Starbucks is responding to people on Twitter letting them know that they are heard and that Starbucks is committed to helping the island.

CREDIT: @Starbucks / Twitter

Only time will tell if the drink is something that will stay around or just a flash in the pan.

Some critics are not appeased with Starbucks donating money and coffee beans to devastated farmers.

CREDIT: @TainoAnomaly / Twitter

With so much happening on the island, the drink is becoming a way for people to further voice their anger with how Puerto Rico has been treated since Hurricane Maria.

Some have raised concerns over “Our Puerto Rican Flavors” being the tagline.

CREDIT: @MarcusShepard / Twitter

There hasn’t been any news yet as to whether or not Starbucks with donate any proceeds to Puerto Rico or nonprofits helping the island. The phrase is offending people for its cultural appropriation.

We all just have to wait and see if the drink will be good or bad for the Starbucks brand.

CREDIT: @Detresss / Twitter

Only time will tell.


READ: 17 Typical Christmas Foods Eaten In Latin America

Share this story with all of your friends by tapping that little share button below!

These Fast Food Items That Are Only Available In Latin America Will Give You Some Serious Food Envy

Culture

These Fast Food Items That Are Only Available In Latin America Will Give You Some Serious Food Envy

@McDonaldsMexico / Twitter

Fast food is key to contemporary societies. Some people see fast food chains, the majority of which are originally from the United States, as a sign of cultural imperialism, an unstoppable force that just feeds on greed and crushes local industries and culinary cultures. The recently deceased Mexican painter Francisco Toledo, for example, fought and won the battle of stopping McDonald’s from opening a branch in the main square of the city of Oaxaca. 

Critics see fast food as a way in which companies want to set an standarized way of living. Companies like McDonald’s, Burger King or Starbucks have expanded worldwide. However, fast food also provides a sense of comfort, of feeling at home basically anywhere in the world. 

Well, one of the expansion strategies used by fast food chains is offering products that appeal to the local taste. Menus in different countries offer surprising options that make locals feel cared for and help visitors discover something new while being in a familiar place. These are some of the dishes that you can only find in Latin America. 

If you know what queso panela is you will drool at this Starbucks sandwich.

Credit: Twitter. @StarbucksMexico

Queso panela is a delicious Mexican cheese that can be grilled and is similar to Turkish varieties brought by the Spanish conquerors (in fact, many staples of Mexican cuisine have a Middle Eastern origin). If you are on a diet and just can’t let go of cheese, then chances are that this is a must-have in your fridge. This sandwich looks so homemade that we just want to curl in one of those big Starbucks chairs and eat it. 

Because Colombians are just a little bit fancy…

Credit: Twitter. @McDonaldsColombia

Yum! Colombians can be very sophisticated when it comes to food and this delicious burger is proof of it. It has melted cheese and prosciutto, aka fancy ham. And this burger was created for a good cause: part of the proceedings went to a charity that provides accommodation for children in need. Delicious and morally satisfying. 

Because you can’t have a restaurant in Venezuela and not sell arepas.

Credit: Twitter. @McDonaldsVenezuela

McMuffins are a staple of McDonald’s breakfasts worldwide, but of course the fast food giant had to offer traditional arepas in its Venezuelan branches. 

Yuquitas are available in Venezuela, but there is a sad story behind it.

Credit: Twitter. @McDonaldsVenezuela

Due to food scarcity in the South American country, McDonald’s stopped selling French fries in some locations and replaced them with Yuquitas, made out of Yucca plants. Yucca does bring some health benefits, though, and provides relief for osteoarthritis, high blood pressure, migraine headaches, inflammation of the intestine (colitis), high cholesterol, stomach disorders, diabetes, poor circulation, and liver and gallbladder disorders. 

McDonald’s offers one of the staples of Mexican breakfast: molletes!

Credit: Twitter. @McDonaldsMexico

Molletes are almost as popular as chilaquiles (the delicious concoction of fried tortilla triangles, authentic salsa, cream and cheese). Molletes are basically a piece of bread, traditionally a bolillo, with refried beans and melted cheese on top. The cereza en el pastel is a touch of pico de gallo or the hot sauce of your liking. The McDonald’s version is a bit meh. It uses a sort of English muffin instead of a crunchy, fluffy bolillo

And apparently you can also get molletes with no frijoles! That is like our worst fast food nightmare ever.

Credit: Twitter. @YurithKat

This poor woman must have had the worst beginning of her day ever. A mollete with no beans is like a burger with no meat (or veggie patty for those who prefer them). Definitely one of the worst ways to wake up on the wrong side of the bed, metaphorically speaking. 

And Burger King Mexico no se queda atrás: burritos a la mexicana.

Credit: Burger King Mexico

Yes, you can get breakfast burritos in the United States, but this version is only available in Mexico and is made a la mexicana, which basically means that it has freshly chopped tomato, green chili and onion. It is a great morning pick me up and can help greatly with la cruda. 

For a Boricua taste, a Monchi Burger.

Credit: McDonald’s Puerto Rico

Launched in April this year and for a limited time, this new hamburger was prepared with sweet and light Mallorca bread. It was available in two versions: beef or chicken, and comes with fresh lettuce, tomato, cheese, ketchup and mayonnaise. Yum. 

And of course Burger King has a classic churrasquito in Argentina!

Credit: Burger King Argentina

Argentinians love their meat, but they also love their thick, crunchy bread (the kind that makes your jaws ache after you eat a whole sandwich). It is no surprise that Burger King introduced a churrasquito in its menu. Layer upon layer of fatty, delicious animal products (not suitable for vegans, obvs). 

El Chapo And Jeffrey Epstein Were This Latina Attorney’s First Clients And She Gets Hate Mail For It

Things That Matter

El Chapo And Jeffrey Epstein Were This Latina Attorney’s First Clients And She Gets Hate Mail For It

Mariel Colón Miró was just four months out of law school, waiting for New York State bar exam results at the ripe age of 26 years old when she was scrolling through Craigslist looking for jobs. She stumbled upon a New York firm that was looking for a bilingual paralegal and went for it. It wasn’t until she got the job that she asked who her client was.

Later, in an interview, she confessed that the name Joaquín Archivaldo Guzmán Loera sounded familiar, but it was her trusty friend, Google, that gave her the full scoop. The Puerto Rican recalls “googling who this person was and I’m like, holy shit!” It was El Chapo.

Colón Miró just sort of “clicked” with El Chapo in person.

Credit: marielcolonmiroesq / Instagram

The first time she met him, she was supposed to go with her boss, but they left their ID on the subway and couldn’t gain access to the Metropolitan Correctional Center (MCC) that detains El Chapo. So Colón Miró went by herself. She sat across from him and said hello. El Chapo put his hand up against the glass, and she put hers up against his. They talked for three hours about their Latinidad and politics. “He is a very likable person,” she told New York. “It was like a click. This is meant to be my job. I felt very comfortable.”

She turned down a job at the Legal Aid Society after El Chapo asked her to join his defense team as a trial attorney.

Credit: marielcolonmiroesq / Instagram

She had been visiting him nearly every day at MCC for months, going through the defense team’s strategy, every piece of discovery, and practicing for cross-examination. Senior attorney Jeffrey Lichtman cites Colón Miró as the only reason El Chapo trusted his defense team. “Chapo, not being American and familiar with our justice system, didn’t trust everyone who worked on the case. But he always trusted her,” Lichtman says.

Colón Miró sympathizes with El Chapo, who was kept in solitary confinement 24/7 and only allowed to speak with Colón Miró herself.

Credit: marielcolonmiroesq / Instagram

He was forbidden from speaking to his wife and was only allowed one hour of television a day. Given his two prison breaks during outdoor time, he’s also been denied requests to go outside. “MCC is a very inhumane place, especially if you’re in the solitary housing unit,” Colón Miró told New York Magazine. “It is not a sanitary place. You can see rats walking around. It is nasty. Other clients have told me there’s mold on the water faucets, the AC is never clean. You can actually see the dust and mold.”

Today, she’s even helping El Chapo’s wife with her fashion line, which glorifies El Chapo himself.

Credit: marielcolonmiroesq / Instagram

“El Chapo Guzmaán: JGL” will sell glow-in-the-dark cell phone cases featuring El Chapo’s signature, alongside hoodies and T-shirts. On top of that, she’s working on El Chapo’s appeal case, citing the effects of the supermax prison in which he resides, often known as the “Alcatraz of the Rockies.” He’s allowed outdoor time now, but Colón Miró feels he’s been dehumanized. “I noticed he was sad. Completely different. His demeanor, his eyes. Even his hair — they shaved his head. It doesn’t matter if you’ve been convicted of the most heinous crimes or horrible crimes, I don’t think that anybody deserves to be treated that way.”

Colón Miró grew up in Puerto Rico and studied music business at Loyola University in New Orleans.

Credit: marielcolonmiroesq / Instagram

She eventually enrolled in law school on the island and later transferred to Hofstra. Today, she sings in the Hillsong church choir, and tells New York that she sleeps “with a clear conscience.” For Colón Miró, her job is knowing that “we are all sinners. Some of us are sinners that happened to break the law.”

Colón Miró’s second client was Jeffrey Epstein before he committed suicide.

Credit: marielcolonmiroesq / Instagram

Her clientele list has caused an onslaught of hate mail for Colón Miró who ask her how she’s able to represent convicted killers and sex offenders. “If you have a moral dilemma with that, then this profession is not for you. It’s easy to lose that human perspective in this profession. You think that detaching makes it easier to do your job, but it makes it harder for your client. You can’t ever lose that perspective, that empathy, that caring for them. I don’t ever want to lose it. I think that’s what distinguishes me,” she told New York Magazine.