Encountering this Frappuccino is all down to timing…and bad luck!

Starbucks never rests in Japan, where they’re constantly adding new limited-edition Frappuccinos to the menu, hopping from seasonal delights to new combinations so often it can be hard to keep up with them all.

Not all Frappuccinos are made equal, though, and when one becomes so popular it sells out, customers can be left feeling crushed at the missed opportunity to try the limited-time flavour. However, it’s not all bad luck, because when a limited-edition Frappuccino sells out, customers get the option to order an off-the-menu Frappuccino, and this is such a rare occurrence it’s been dubbed the “Phantom Frappuccino“.

▼ There’s a silver lining to the “sold out” signs when you’re at a Starbucks in Japan.

Currently, Starbucks has a couple of Valentine’s Day Frappuccinos on the menu in Japan, one called the Melty Chocolate and the other called Chocolate on the Chocolate. They’ve proven to be so popular that a number of stores have already sold out, but when one menu item disappears, the phantom menu appears, and that means customers have the option to order the Hojicha Cream Frappuccino.

This Frappuccino was on the menu as a seasonal exclusive at the beginning of last year, and now it’s become the phantom Frappuccino of the season, much to the delight of customers like our very own K. Masami, who loved its depth of flavour, thanks to the star ingredient, roasted green tea.

▼ Previously, the Coffee and Cream Frappuccino with Coffee Cream Swirl was on standby as the Phantom Frappuccino.

It’s a smart idea for Starbucks to have a phantom Frappuccino waiting in the wings to bring a smile to customers’ faces in the event of a sold-out situation. Given that coffee, cream, and hojicha are ingredients always stocked at Starbucks for regular drinks on the menu, it makes financial sense for the company too.

Since customers won’t know when or where a limited-edition Frappuccino will sell out until it happens, the Phantom Frappuccino is an unpredictable beast. However, given that we’re coming to the end of Starbucks’ Valentine’s Day season–yes, even before it’s begun–there’s a good chance you might be able to come across one this week, so keep an eye out and let us know if you find one!

Photos © SoraNews24
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