It’s Chai Time

Oct 5, 2020Beverages, Categories, Seasonal Flavor Insights

It is that time of year, FALL!!!

In my opinion, it’s the best time of the year. The leaves are changing, the temperature is perfect, and I can wear over-sized sweaters that hide all the weight I am about to put on during the holidays. I look forward to eating copious amounts of comforting food, sitting by the fire reading books, and spending time with family (masks and all). One of the first things that gets me excited for fall is when I begin seeing my beloved Chai lattes front and center at my favorite coffee houses. One sip and my mind immediately escapes to sitting outside with the crisp fall air.

For those of you flavor hesitators that may have never tried this delicious, perfect fall and winter beverage I will quickly ground you on the basis of all things CHAI and show you how you can use chai spice in so many different applications. PSA – you will never be the same ;).

1. What is Chai?

In India, Chai means tea, in the rest of the world however it is a catch-all term for a spiced tea blended with milk. There are a variety of different types of chai tea, from the spiciest to your mildest, most approachable first-time chai. One of the most popular types of chai is the ‘masala chai’ which refers to a combination of spices. The best part of chai is there is no one definitive recipe for a perfect masala chai. For those of you looking for adventure and pure happiness in a cup, look no further.

Even though there is no one definitive recipe, there are some staples you will find in most spiced chai blends:

2. How can I use chai spices outside of the iconic latte?

There are endless opportunities to leverage chai spices outside of the traditional chai latte. Chai spices transcend category boundaries and I wanted to provide you with a few ideas that will leave your mouth watering:


3. What is the seasonal relationship with Chai?

Based on our proprietary seasonal research, we found out that Chai and Vanilla Chai have a strong association with the fall and winter. Chai was a niche flavor for both refreshment and cafe beverages, meaning it will perform really well with a specific group of consumers. Vanilla Chai was an emerging flavor in the cafe space during the winter. However, it did not appear in the sweet goods space and I think this is a very large opportunity! How could you not enjoy cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, and clove in your fall and winter treats?

I will leave you with this, as we all know having a seasonal strategy is incredibly important. We saw the Pumpkin Spice Latte take storm and steal the hearts of Americans almost ten years ago (can you believe it has been almost 10 years?), we have been trying to discover what other flavors could have similar appeal. I am definitely biased here, but I believe that the chai latte could be a PSL killer.

Coming soon… learn more about another fall favorite, butternut squash!


1 Comment

  1. Laveena

    hi Savannah, great article and close to my heart since I am from India too. My previous assignemnt was in the Portfolio team in India, and we have some great work done in this area of Chai (flavours for Tea). Do call out for them for evaluations and I will be happy to connect


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