Upside Down Coffee Meaning at Starbucks? Is It Good?


Coffee lovers appreciate their favorite coffee drinks at their local coffee shops. And different coffee shops have different menus. In fact, Starbucks even has a secret menu of drinks that aren’t listed on their regular menu. You might have heard someone order an upside-down coffee and wondered what the upside-down coffee meaning is exactly.

Caramel latte macchiato
Caramel latte macchiato

We’ll help you understand what it means, but also which drinks can be ordered upside down.

What Does Upside Down Mean at Starbucks?

Perhaps you’ve heard the term upside down coffee and wondered what it means. And the meaning is exactly as it sounds.

Whatever drink you order upside down will be made with the ingredients added to the cup in exact reverse order, meaning that the bottom layer becomes the top layer and so forth.

coffee cups
coffee cups

Instead of the flavored drizzle being added to the top of your drink as the final step, it is instead pumped into the bottom of the cup as the first layer and therefore it’s also the first flavor you’ll taste.

When coffee is made upside down, it sometimes alters the flavor of the drink and gives it a different flavor. This can be the way to order some coffee drinks for those to who don’t care for a strong coffee flavor but still want to drink it.

How Did Upside Down Drinks Start?

Upside down coffee drinks believe to have been started at Starbucks or Japan. It’s not really known.

What is known is that Starbucks started serving the upside-down latte in recent years and the item stuck and became a popular drink, though it’s only on their secret Starbucks menus.

What Are The Best Drinks to Order Upside-Down Version At Coffee Shops?

Starbucks stores is the coffee shop that’s known for making upside down drinks on their secret menu.

If you know of other coffee shops that do this too, leave us a comment below as we’d like to know.

Iced Caramel Macchiato

An upside-down iced caramel macchiato means that the steps to make this regular drink are reversed and first caramel, then espresso, milk and ice are added, and finally vanilla syrup goes in the mix.

Making a drink upside down sometimes modifies the flavor which in this case wouldn’t end with a caramel flavor as it normally would with a regular caramel macchiato.

pouring coffee cream
pouring coffee cream

Instead, in an upside down caramel macchiato the caramel sauce or caramel drizzle is pumped into the bottom of the cup, making it the first flavor tasted in an upside-down caramel macchiato. It just might become one of your favorite drinks.

Upside Down Latte

The name indicates that the ingredients used to make it have been inverted. This can be ordered for a caramel latte, vanilla latte, regular latte, latte macchiato, or any other latte flavor.

It’s made by first adding steamed milk in the bottom of the glass, then one or two shots of espresso, and is topped with milk foam.  

For flavored lattes, the drizzle of vanilla syrup, caramel syrup, or whatever the flavor might be, is added as well.

Upside Down Espresso Shot

Like the other upside-down coffee drinks, an espresso drink is no different.

It’s made in reverse order instead of the traditional method, which means the espresso shot will pour on top of the milk instead of the reverse and it going first.

Upside Down Caramel Snickerdoodle Macchiato

This is another Starbucks drink menu item from the secret menu and is ordered upside down. The snickerdoodle has extra vanilla and cinnamon dolce syrups added for the flavoring.

The remaining ingredients are like the regular caramel macchiato.

Latte coffee cup
Latte coffee cup

How to Order an Upside-Down Drink on the Starbucks App?

Do you order your coffee ahead using the Starbucks app? Did you know that you can even order upside down coffee using the app? Here’s how to do it.

For example, if you want. To order an upside-down caramel macchiato, you’ll want to scroll down until you can view the shots options and keep going until you reach the shots preparation section.

Once there, look for and click on the upside-down option.  This way, the Starbucks baristas will know that you want them to make our drink in reverse.

Frequently Asked Questions

Following are frequently asked questions that relate to answering the question, what is an upside-down coffee meaning? If you have a question that’s not answered here, feel free to drop it to us in the comments box below and we’ll be happy to respond.

coffee latte with coffee beans
coffee latte with coffee beans

What is an upside-down coffee?

An upside-down coffee refers to a coffee drink that’s made in reverse. For example, if the whipped cream is usually added last, it would instead be added first and in the bottom of the cup.

What does an upside-down coffee cup mean?

It means that the ingredients are added in a different order in the cup, the reverse order. To make the same drink, they would start with the last ingredient first. Sometimes ristretto shots are used when referring to espresso.

Why do people order Starbucks drinks upside-down?

People enjoy ordering Starbucks drinks upside-down for a variety of reasons. One reason is because it makes them feel important because they’re getting something extra-special that’s not a regular menu item. It’s on the Starbucks secret menu.

Another reason that people order upside-down drinks is because the like the flavor of them. Because the ingredients are added in the reverse order, this often results in altering the flavor of the drink.

Is a macchiato just an upside-down latte?

No, a macchiato and an upside-down latte are two different things.

various kinds of coffee
various kinds of coffee

An upside-down latte consists of espresso and steamed milk, but an upside-down macchiato is made by layering espresso with caramel drizzle and topping it off with steamed milk, which creates a sweet, smooth drink.

Have a good day and enjoy your cup of coffee!

Related Items:

Easy Iced Caramel Latte
Why Does My Coffee Taste Watery
How To Make Iced Coffee Fast

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Sarah is known for her extra fancy yeast breads, melt in your mouth pies, and everything salads. She has won awards as a home cook, and is passionate about helping others feel smarter in the kitchen. Sarah is the cooking genius of the sister duo.

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