Rant and Rave: Pumped About Pumpkin (Flavoring) Or Not

Art by Amber Shin

Rave: There’s a Reason it’s called “The Great Pumpkin”

Fall is a season like no other.

The weather is cooling down, the leaves are changing colors and there is a resurgence of delicious pumpkin-flavored items.

Pies, breads, lattes, chocolates and more — the pumpkin possibilities are endless and the flavor adds even more comfort to an already amazing dish.

Whenever people eat pumpkin bread or sink their teeth into a pumpkin cream cheese muffin, it can evoke memories of the Charlie Brown Halloween Special or trick or treating.

The smell of warm, pumpkin-flavored goods is like nothing else. A mix of spices, all coming together with a hearty squash to create a pastry and can make any room instantly comforting.

Pumpkin snacks also come in a wide variety. Trader Joe’s boasts seasonal overnight oats, bisques, ales, ice cream, ravioli, samosas and more.

There is nothing like drinking a pumpkin spice latte to start the morning off right.

Sure, the pumpkin spice lattes get a bad rep as basic, but perhaps the reason everyone is drinking them is because they really do taste good.

Popularity is a beacon of quality food — also, the trend of pumpkin-flavored treats has lasted several years. At this point it’s a fall staple.

Embrace the trend. Embrace joy. Embrace pumpkin-flavored cuisine.

Rant: The Pumpkin Flavor is Overrated

When the fall season starts, all I can hear is people saying, “OMG! The pumpkin spice latte is back!”

The first time I tried the PSL in Starbucks, I was scared of the color — it was bright orange. But more importantly, the taste of it was nothing phenomenal. To be honest, it tastes like the smell of a fall candle from Bath and Body Works that is overpowered with a sweet and soupy smell. I love to smell it, just not eat it.

When I have pumpkin desserts, they don’t taste like pumpkin, they just taste sweet with a little bit of spice. It’s also never a consistent taste. Every pumpkin product somehow tastes different. Muffins, cookies, ice cream, scones, coffee — there’s no consistency.

The most annoying part of it all is that when I walk into any grocery store, restaurant or cafe during the fall season, all of my favorite desserts and drinks have pumpkin added to it. I just want my usual order.

A perfect example of this is when I went to Trader Joe’s recently and wanted to get the cinnamon bread I love. I could not find it because they replaced it with pumpkin spice bread for the season. If you are going to add in seasonal items, at least keep the originals.

I feel like seasonal items in general, don’t need to be a thing. If a customer really does love something, why not just make it an all year occurrence? Then, everyone would be happy.

People can love pumpkin spice, but it does not deserve all the hype it gets every time fall comes around.

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Contact Samantha Torre via Twitter (@Sam_t394) or email: sam.torre@pepperdine.edu

Contact Anezka Liskova via email: anezka.liskova@pepperdine.edu