Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Washington DC & Baltimore >
May 8, 2003 10:28 PM

Bubble Tea

  • p

I've been reading about bubble tea. Sadly, I have yet to try it. I did a search on Restaurants and found only one place with Bubble Tea on the menu - somewhere in Rockville. I realize isn't the most recent reference so I thought I would come to the best source available. Anyone know where to get Bubble Tea in the District (not NoVa or Maryland)? I simply do not have the time to travel to Eden Center everytime I get a craving for Bubble Tea! Thanks!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Spare yourself. This concoction is awful. The sweetened, flavored, cold tea can be palatable, but the--forgive me--mucus-like marbles of tapioca bubbles are unappealing, to say the best.

    I tried it out of town (at a Hong Kong tea shop in, of all places, Houston), so I don't know where, locally, you should not go to so as to avoid consuming this gross, gimmicky, grog.

    2 Replies
    1. re: PoolBoy

      Bubble tea, or pearl milk tea, or boba, or whatever you want to call it, can be an acquired taste. Even if you don't enjoy chewing on delicious tapioca balls and yummy milk tea, many others really really go crazy about it and love it - try visiting California and in some towns the milk tea/boba places outnumber Starbucks. I'm sorry you find it unpalatable, but you don't have to attack it. I've had friends who've hated their first sips, and toss the cup away, who are now just as hooked as I am. Personally, I don't think boba out east is really that good, though Saints Alp in New York is comparable to what you can find in California/Taiwan.

      1. re: kat

        I really like Tenren in rockvilles bubble tea. Definitely better than i-cream across the parking lot.

        Too bad teaism only has the one variety.

    2. On the other hand, some of us *like* bubble tea... (I recommend almond, taro, or red bean - the fruit flavors can be harshly artificial and overly sweet)

      Last year people reported that Wok & Roll in Chinatown was serving bubble tea, and Teaism (all three locations) has their version called "Zhenzhou Pearls".

      Bubble tea, like good Chinese food, is much easier to find in the suburbs.

      1 Reply
      1. re: coastcat

        Wok and Roll in Chinatown definitely has bubble tea and makes a pretty good one (I actually prefer the bubble coffee). The oriental supermarket across the street has large-guage straws and tapioca balls for making your own- just make sure that you use a low boil, otherwise the balls turn to mush.

      2. Where else but the Mall in Columbia? I get one every time I go there.

        You guys out there will just enjoy watching the young lady making it. My wife says "I know why you always get a bubble tea!" Macha Mango is my favorite.

        1. Bubble tea is nothing but delicious, especially in the summer months. Suong Que in Edens Center is my favorite place for it, but if you're in downtown DC, the Phillip's Cafe on 14th and H Street, NW has it in a few powdered milk flavors. Teaism also carries it, in a form, and calls it zhenzhou pearls, or something along those lines. Enjoy your tea, and remember it's pretty filling.

          1. If you try it somewhere and like it, I have an oversupply of the tapioca pearls (I went for the colored ones rather than black)and the large straws. You can buy ingredients on the web, but they come primarily in packs intended for shop use, rather than home use.

            You are welcome to share my supply if you decide you like bubble tea and want to make it yourself. Making it at home lets you control the sweetness of the tea/coffee/juice and pull it down to an adult's palate level.