If we’re going to be brutally honest here, I’ve never really understood what is so panty-dropping about the whole pumpkin spice phenomenon. But, in the name of Ugg boots and cute Instagram pics and all that is holy, I’ve accepted this fad because I’m a college girl and it would simply be against my culture if I didn’t.

And while I applaud America for its creativity (i.e. pumpkin spice-flavored condoms), I think it may be time for autumn to turn over a new leaf. Nothing says cozy sweaters and crunchy leaves like pumpkin spice’s hot older brother, chai tea—the perfect blend of cloves, ginger, cinnamon and all that is wonderful. There’s just something about this angsty little cup of heaven that will leave your taste buds swooning in a way that pumpkin spice never could. So if you’re in the Boston area, brace yourselves, because the chai latte just might become the autumnal calling of every basic bitch in the city, myself included.

Your Go-To Chai Latte – The Thinking Cup
If you’re looking for something simple or just a nice transition into the world of chai lattes, let me start off by asking you to please step away from the Starbucks. Boston is home to a hefty collection of fantastic little coffee shops, and any one of them is bound to make a good chai. My personal favorite is housed at The Thinking Cup. While you may need some luck getting a table (or some patience standing in line), their latte is perfectly creamy and delightfully simple. There are three different locations scattered throughout Boston, and something about the cool, rustic atmosphere of each one just makes the experience even better.

The Iced Chai – Bread + Butter
Situated in the heart of the North End, Bread + Butter makes a mean iced chai latte. This one is perfect for those awkward, random autumn days that feel like summer—it’s all the spice of a chai minus the heat. And the best part is that this particular drink isn’t as creamy and heavy as the others, which means you’ll be able to run around the rest of the North End and stuff your face with cannolis and Italian food galore!

The Chai-der – The Wired Puppy
Of all the ligers, Toyota Priuses and Croc-Uggboots out there, the Chai-der is hands down my favorite hybrid. And if you’re looking for something less sweet and more bitter, The Wired Puppy has this drink on lock. Something about the cinnamon aroma of the chai and the tangy flavor of the apple cider pair so well together, whether you order it hot or iced.

The Thai Chai – Trident Booksellers Café
If you’re a fan of bubble tea and those eyeball-like bastards they call tapioca pearls, Thai Chai is your calling. This is one of the more innovative versions of this drink, which is fitting considering it comes from Trident, Boston’s coolest bookstore-turned-café. And the taste itself is quite different, with the usual spiciness of a chai replaced by smoother clove and cardamom notes. It’s on the more daring (not to mention pricy) side of things, but I promise it’s worth a taste.

The Chai Fro-Yo – Angora Café
Pinkberry’s pumpkin spice frozen yogurt has nothing on this chai froyo. My roommate last year was lactose intolerant and even she couldn’t resist this creation—that should say something. Seriously, though, one spoonful and you’ll forget you’re eating it in 50-degree weather. Just ask for the Oregon chai flavor mixed with malted vanilla—yes, heaven is a place on earth and it’s called Angora Café.

OK ladies and gents, if you’ve learned anything today it should be that pumpkin spice is just so yesterday. While chai lattes may not come in contraceptive form (at least not yet), they are spicy and wonderful and everything you could ever hope for in a fall drink. So whether you’re basic or not, next time you even think about ordering a pumpkin spice latte, remember that just around the corner is the hotter, wiser older brother. And his name is Chai.