What Does Upside Down Mean At Starbucks? – BaristaHQ

Have you ever heard the term "upside down" regarding ordering a drink at Starbucks?

Maybe you've tried an upside down caramel macchiato or latte or heard someone ordering one, but what does upside down mean at Starbucks?

In this article, we'll explore the various upside down options available at Starbucks, including the upside down espresso shot and venti upside down latte.

We'll also discuss the process of ordering an upside down drink and the potential benefits of trying this interesting twist on your favorite Starbucks beverages.

At Starbucks, an upside down drink refers to a beverage made with the ingredients in a different order--usually reversed-- than the way it is typically made.

Upside down coffee drinks are not an official menu item at Starbucks, but they are a popular request among customers who want to mix things up with their usual coffee order.

These types of drinks started at Starbucks when baristas began experimenting with the order in which ingredients were added to drinks and found that it resulted in a different flavor profile.

Today, customers can order a variety of upside down drinks at Starbucks, including an upside down latte or an upside down espresso macchiato.

Some people even order a venti upside down latte, or an upside down shot for an extra caffeine boost in a very strong Starbucks drink.

Overall, upside down drinks offer customers the option to customize their coffee-drinking experience and try something new at their favorite coffee shops.

Starbucks Caramel Macchiato Upside Down

What Drinks Can You Order Upside-Down At Starbucks?

There are a variety of upside down drinks available at Starbucks, each offering a unique flavor experience. Here are some of them:

Caramel Macchiato

An upside down caramel macchiato is a twist on the traditional caramel macchiatos offered at Starbucks.[1]

While a regular caramel macchiato is made with espresso, steamed milk, and caramel sauce, an upside down version of the drink is made with the ingredients in a different way using the same machine.

Specifically, the caramel sauce is placed at the bottom of the cup, followed by the espresso, and then topped off with the steamed milk.

This creates a unique flavor experience as the ingredients mix together differently while the drink is being consumed.

In addition to the upside down version, Starbucks also offers a regular caramel macchiato, which is made with the espresso and steamed milk on the bottom and the caramel drizzle on top.

When ordering an upside down caramel macchiato, it is important to specify that you would like the ingredients in the upside down order.

This can be done by asking for an upside-down version or specifying that you would like the caramel syrup at the bottom of the cup.

There is also the option to order just a macchiato, which is made with espresso and steamed milk.


If you're feeling adventurous and want to mix things up with your usual coffee order, consider trying an upside down latte at Starbucks.

This unique twist on the classic latte beverage is made with the ingredients in reverse order, resulting in a varying flavor experience.

While a traditional latte consists of espresso, steamed milk, and milk foam, an upside down latte features milk foam at the bottom of the cup, espresso in the middle, and steamed milk on top.

This allows the flavors to blend in a new and interesting way as you drink your latte.

If you're a fan of flavored lattes, Starbucks also offers upside down versions of their caramel latte, latte macchiato, and vanilla latte.

Or, if you prefer your Starbucks lattes iced, you can also order an upside down iced latte. Just be sure to ask the barista for an upside down Starbucks drink, or you might end up with a normal latte.

Upside Down Latte Macchiato

Espresso Shot

While a typical espresso shot is made with a single or double shot of espresso, an upside down shot is made in a different way.

Specifically, the milk foam is placed at the bottom of the cup, followed by the espresso.

This creates a unique flavor experience as the ingredients mix together differently while the drink is being consumed.

The upside down version of the espresso shot offers a bolder, more concentrated espresso flavor as the milk foam is not mixed in with the espresso.

Additionally, the visual presentation of the upside down shot is eye-catching, with the creamy milk foam on the bottom of the cup combining with the dark espresso on top.

When it comes to preparing an upside down shot, the type of espresso shot you use can affect the final result.

For example, using a ristretto shot, which is a shorter, more concentrated shot of espresso, will result in a stronger flavor than using a long shot, which utilizes more water and has a longer extraction time.

Additionally, two shots or three shots of espresso can also be used to create a more intense flavor.

Keep in mind that using a larger quantity of espresso shots, especially with ristretto shots, will increase the caffeine content of the upside down shot.[2]

Cold Brew Dalgona Coffee

Looking for a delicious and refreshing coffee drink to beat the summer heat? Try a Cold Brew Dalgona Latte at Starbucks.[3]

This tasty beverage is made with cold brew coffee, vanilla syrup, and steamed whole milk, topped with a dollop of whipped cream. The combination of flavors is absolutely heavenly.

If you want something new, you can also order an upside down version of the Cold Brew Dalgona Latte.

The barista will add the vanilla syrup and cold brew coffee to the bottom of the cup, followed by the steamed whole milk, and then top it off with a dollop of whipped cream.

Caramel Snickerdoodle Macchiato

The Caramel Snickerdoodle Macchiato is a delicious and sweet Starbucks drink that you can order from the Starbucks Secret Menu.

It is made with an iced soy caramel macchiato and vanilla and cinnamon dolce syrups, which are mixed together to create a tasty blend of caramel, cinnamon, and vanilla flavors.

To mix all of the flavors together, you can order it "upside down," which means the ingredients are assembled in a different order in the cup.

To make this drink, the barista adds the syrups and espresso shots to the bottom of the cup, followed by Starbucks soy milk.

The amount of syrup you'll need will depend on the size of your drink - 1 pump for a tall, 1.5 pumps for a grande, and 2 pumps for a venti.

Upside Down Caramel Snickerdoodle Macchiato From Starbucks

Why Do People Order Upside-Down Drinks At Starbucks?

Have you ever noticed someone ordering an upside down drink at Starbucks and wondered why they chose this reverse way?

This results in the ingredients being mixed together differently as the drink is consumed, creating a unique flavor and taste experience.

Some people enjoy ordering upside down drinks because they find that the flavors blend together more seamlessly this way.

Others may simply be looking for something a bit different and enjoy the novelty of ordering a drink upside down.

How To Order Upside-Down Drinks (App & In Store)

If you're interested in trying an upside down drink at Starbucks, it's easy to do so! Here's how you can order one:

At Starbucks Locations

Simply visit your local Starbucks and let the barista know you'd like to order an upside down version of your favorite drink.

Be sure to specify your desired Starbucks cup size, syrup flavors, and any other customization options you'd like--for example, if you like it with ice or not, less hot water, etc.

Then, the barista will assemble your drink with the ingredients in a different order, resulting in a unique flavor experience.

The Starbucks App

If you prefer to order your drinks through the Starbucks app, you can select your desired drink and customization options as usual.[4]

To order an upside down version of your drink, simply select the upside down option under the Shot Prep section.

It's worth noting that not all drinks are available as upside down versions, but many of the popular espresso-based drinks can be ordered this way.

We have listed some in this guide, but you can also ask your barista or refer to the app to see which options are available.

Starbucks App Order For Caramel Macchiato Upside Down

Frequently Asked Upside Down Starbucks Questions

Is an upside-down macchiato the same as a regular latte?

No, an upside down macchiato is not the same as a regular latte. While a regular latte is made with espresso shots and steamed milk, an upside down macchiato is made with the ingredients assembled in a different order.

Are all upside-down drinks on Starbucks' secret menu?

No. There's an option for you on the Starbucks app to order an upside down espresso-based drink and your barista will know what the term means.

What is an upside-down flat white?

The upside down flat white at Starbucks is a twist on the traditional flat white, so the steamed milk and microfoam are added to a cup, and then two ristretto espresso shots are added.

Conclusion - Try It Upside Down Today!

Have you ordered upside down drinks at Starbucks before? If not, we hope this article provided some helpful information about what upside down drinks are and how to order them.

If you haven't tried an upside down drink yet, we encourage you to give one a try the next time you visit Starbucks!

You may discover a new favorite flavor combination and enjoy the unique experience of sipping on an upside down drink.

Take it a step further and enjoy your upside drink with Starbucks’s upside down ghost mug.


1. https://www.starbucks.com/menu/product/413/hot

2. https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/in-depth/caffeine/art-20045678

3. https://stories.starbucks.com/stories/2020/dalgona-coffee-how-to-whip-up-the-latest-coffee-trend-at-home/
4. https://www.starbucks.com/rewards/mobile-apps/ 

Kim Fernandez

Kim Fernandez

Kim Fernandez is a freelance writer whose love for coffee goes beyond just drinking it--she enjoys writing about it too. When she's not writing, you'll find her sitting in a cafe, reading a book while drinking a freshly brewed cup of joe.

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