What is Bubble Tea?

What is Bubble Tea?


    Bubble tea is a Taiwanese beverage that involves mixing tea with milk, fruit, and/or juices. After that, you can add tapioca pearls, or any other topping, such as jelly, to complete the beverage. While bubble tea seems to be all the rage in Canada, and the US, it's been a popular beverage in China and other parts of Asia, as far back as the 1980s. In more recent years Bubble tea has often been called Boba tea as well. There is no difference between the two.


The Bubbles. What are they?

Bubble tea may look like an unusual beverage to some. The "bubble" or "boba", refers to the Tapioca pearls that are added to the drink, and give it that distinct taste and appearance. Without it, the beverage would simply not be considered Bubble Tea (Boba tea). 

In order to enjoy your bubble tea, you can't just use your typical straws. Since the tapioca pearls are bigger than your average drinking straw, you'll need to get a straw specifically designed for boba tea.

Luckily, due to the increased popularity of the drink, these straws have not been difficult to locate for years.

Who Invented Bubble Tea?

While there is no evidence of the invention bubble tea, there is some story behind it. The blend may have first appeared in Asia in 1980s according to some rumours. Visiting Taiwan or Hong Kong, and you will be amazed at the number of unique bubble teashops found around every corner. As a post-work pick-me up, and a place to hang out, Taiwanese coffee stands were very popular in 1980s. This created a fierce competition in the tea market. Tea merchants began creating new and more creative teas.

Chun Shui Tang, a Taichung teahouse, began to serve Chinese tea cold. This was a result of Japanese-style iced tea. One year later, Chun Shui's product manager, Ms. Lin Hsiu Hui became bored during a staff meeting. In a spur of the moment, she decided that her Taiwanese dessert called "fen yuan" (a sweetened tapioca cake) would be poured into her Assam Iced Tea. She then enjoyed it. It was so delicious that they added it to the menu. Soon, it became the franchise’s top-selling product. Concessions in Taiwan soon began to add tapioca pearls and other flavours to their iced tees after witnessing the success of this teahouse's drink.

The popularity of the Taiwanese version has grown throughout China, Australia, the United States, the UK and Canada.


What does bubble tea taste like?

  It's a refreshing, sweet and delicious treat. There are many flavors available, so you can choose your favorite.


   Tapioca pearls can be found at the bottom of the drink and have a chewy consistency similar to chewing gum or jelly. At first glance, bubble tea might look strange to some people, however it's definite worth a try. Sometimes different flavours of tapioca are available. The pearls can be found in a variety of colours as well. They are often black but can also be transparent or white. This makes the drink look a lot like a passionfruit.


How is Bubble tea served?


   Bubble tea is often made in a transparent cup to show its bubbly properties. In addition to the various fruit infusions and teas mentioned, you can also use fresh fruits, crushed ice, milk, and even milk. This makes for a really fancy milkshake. Just blend all the ingredients together and give it a good shake.