Starbucks will be launching Via Ready Brew Refreshers soon!  They arrive in stores on July 10, 2012, and will be available in two flavors: Hibiscus Berry and Cool Lime.

As you probably already know, these are the same two flavors as the fresh, handcrafted version of the Refreshers, which will be also launching on July 10, 2012. In other words, both the fresh in-store handcrafted Refreshers, and the Via Ready Brew versions launch on July 10th.

This may seem a little confusing, so just to be clear, soon there will be three versions of Refreshers available:

  1. Handcrafted Refreshers in Starbucks stores – launching July 10, 2012. (Hibiscus Berry and Cool Lime flavors) (Available in the U.S., Canada, and the UK, Ireland, Germany, and possibly other markets.)
  2. Via Ready Brew Refreshers – launching July 10, 2012. (Hibiscus Berry and Cool Lime flavors) (Available in the U.S., as I understand it.)
  3. Ready-to-drink canned Refreshers – already available in grocery stores, and in the RTD case at Starbucks stores. (Strawberry Lemonade, Orange Melon, and Raspberry Pomegranate flavors)  (Canned Refreshers are available only the U.S.)

By the way, as I talked to partners and tweeted with them about which markets had which versions of the Refreshers, I heard conflicting answers, so please do correct me if I’ve got it wrong! Thank you!  Interestingly, the German market is calling these “Refreshas.”

I have had the fresh Refreshers many times, and always thoroughly enjoyed them.  I prefer the handcrafted flavors over the canned drinks, and I think I like the lime flavor the best, but it is a tough call.

The hallmark of the Refreshers beverages – whether the canned Ready to Drink version, the handcrafted version, or the Via Ready Brew Refreshers – is that the boost of caffeine comes from a green coffee extract.

I’ve heard that Friday July 13, 2012, there will be a big Refreshers sampling event:  Starbucks will be giving away the “tall” size for free, if you want to try one, however it is strictly between the hours of noon to three, as I understand it.

By the way, when I tried these in Orange County, California last year, I discovered that you could even order the Trenta size of the freshly made handcrafted Refreshers!  That’s a lot of Refreshers!  I am genuinely looking forward to these new drinks.  It brings a whole new category to the menu, and really offers something unique and light for a hot summer day.  At least when I tried them, the Refreshers always struck me as having something a little more substantial than an iced tea, but lighter than drinking a juice – that’s just my opinion obviously.  In any case, it’s nice to have a whole new category of cold beverages!

If you’ve tried these, please weigh in on whether you like them!  Feel free to weigh in on Refresher-related conversation.