Image from Epicurious.
Bubble tea or boba has recently grown popular in the U.S. Local boba shops and chains, like Kung Fu Tea, are popping up throughout the country. Originally from Taiwan, bubble tea traditionally consists of milk tea (although there are now many variations and options) and tapioca pearls, also known as “boba.” Bubble tea, on the other hand, is a reference to the froth formed by shaking the tea, not the pearls (Mic).
While coffee has long been a social drink, something you get on dates or with friends, it seems like bubble tea is rapidly taking its place. You can find boba shops just about anywhere, almost always teeming with people. Coffee study dates have turned into boba study dates, and after a meal out, hitting up a boba place has become the default. I may be biased because I don’t like coffee, but the wide array of options available at boba places makes them, in my opinion, superior.
Maybe Starbucks isn’t shaking, maybe coffee isn’t going anywhere, but bubble tea places have grown to be places I associate with friends and good times. Some of my most precious friendships blossomed through boba dates, not to mention, there’s something for everyone. Don’t like tapioca? Get lychee or jelly or no toppings. Lactose intolerant? Get regular tea. Want coffee? Many boba places HAVE COFFEE! In short, bubble tea has more to offer.
Bubble tea or coffee?