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Sep 8, 2013 09:15 AM

bubble tea places in London

These are the three places that I know of that sell bubble tea in London. Does anyone know of others? FWIW, my regular drink is cold green milk tea with tapioca balls, and everything I’ve tried at these places will be some variant of that.

Brew Box Bubble Tea
120 Islington High St, London, Islington N1 8EG (Camden Passage)

A couple of very friendly guys making bubble tea using high end ingredients. There’s a choice of various types of tea and of fruit jellies, as well as tapioca balls. If you get the tea-based drinks (e.g. assam, jasmine, macha), then they use real brewed tea. (They will also brew this for you as a straight tea.) For the milk teas, they use a soy-based milk substitute, which they say they prefer to soy milk because it gives a fuller body, more like a milkshake. But they will use soy milk instead if you ask (no extra charge), which gives a more creamy/ oily texture and a richer feel. The fruit-based bubble teas use syrup from real fruit, not synthetic.

49 Rupert St  London W1D 7PF (also has other locations)

Very large range of teas and boba, dished up with a silly science experiment theme. The teas are all made up from powder and I found them rather sweet, sweeter than any other bubble tea I have had.

Old Tree Bakery
105 Golders Green Rd  London NW11 8HR

Restaurant, bakery, and bubble tea shop. The only boba are tapioca balls, and the choices are limited to hot or cold, tea or green tea, milk or no milk. But the few teas Old Tree does, it does well.

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  1. There are quite a few places, too many to make an exhaustive list. Here's a top 10 list from a Taiwanese perspective that's pretty good:

    1. Bubbleology is awful for a number of reasons, first and foremost the propensity of their customers to leave unfinished bubble teas littered around my neighbourhood. Implicit in this problem is that the bubble tea is so obviously awful that they're always unfinished, so people simply must dump them on the ground rather than spend a single second more holding them, lest they accidentally take another sip. The bubbles are too firm, the drinks too sweet, etc., etc.

      5 Replies
      1. re: brokentelephone

        I agree, bubbleology has the worst tea I've ever had (in UK or US). It has variety but not quality. Yet it made the top ten list that dcfly1 linked to and the wonderful brewbox (best tea I've ever had) did not!

        1. re: goldilocks76

          IMO, there are worse places than Bubbleology in London (not that I'm defending Bubbleology, just saying there are worse). Including Cafe de Hong Kong and Chaboba. Pretty bad.

          That list is from Jan, so newer, better places (brewbox, cuppacha) probably weren't open yet?

          1. re: dcfly1

            I'm quite picky about where I'll eat and drink, so "worst I've ever had" could easily still be average or even above average.

            Brewbox is fairly new, I'm not sure exactly when it opened. Have you been there? How do you think it rates?

            If you are referring to Cuppacha on Newport Street, that did make the list. I'll have to try it. But Chaboba (in Camden) also made the top ten list. If it's really very bad then that doesn't speak well for the reliability of the other recommendations on the list.

            1. re: goldilocks76

              Do places in London make slush BBT (basically milk-shakes)?

              1. re: brokentelephone

                I recently got an offer for a place called Milk, Tea and Pearl. It's on Little Portland. I have no idea if it's good, but the photos were nice. :-) I think it's new, but I'm not sure.

      2. I'm fond of Amanzi on New Cavendish St, but don't consider myself an expert in bubble tea. Anyone else been there and care to comment?

        1. I quite like Boba Jam on Shaftesbury Avenue...

          1 Reply
          1. re: Kavey

            Been to a couple more of the Soho places, Cuppacha and Chatime. Brewbox remains the firm favourite. I think that's because it's less sweet than other palces (I don't have such a sweet tooth) and the clean flavours of the tea really comes through.

          2. Panda Panda in Deptford used to do bubble tea. Haven't been there for quite a while so not sure if they still do.

            1 Reply
            1. re: cathodetube

              They do. For recent prices, here's a photo of a flyer I picked up there last week: