boba (64)
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Img 8837

U Cha Barley milk tea with boba: Continuing my bubble tea taste test across Berkeley, I found myself at a popular tea shop named U Cha on Bancroft. Their expansive menu has the fruit and milk tea flavors you expect from a Taiwanese-style chain. I ordered their barley tea with boba at 20% sweetness with little ice. The flavor was familiar but watered down and over-sweetened; the boba was too chewy. With better options, this one is a pass. 2.0/5.0

2.0 boba tea milk barley ucha bubbletea berkeley drinks
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Sharetea Hokkaido black milk tea with boba: I stopped by this branch of Sharetea to scout out tea shops in downtown Berkeley; this one is located right on the edge of campus. Coming in around lunchtime meant there was a sizeable line of college students, and it took about 10 minutes total from getting in line to retrieving my drink. Their menu has several variants of classic black milk tea, including Hokkaido black tea, which supposedly has a roasted brown sugar flavor. Though I ordered it at 30% sweetness, it was more sweet than I wo... (read more) 2.5/5.0

2.5 boba tea milk black hokkaido sharetea berkeley drinks milktea bubbletea
2016 10 09 14.59.59 hdr

i-Tea Honey Brown Rice Milk Tea with Basil Seeds and Agar Boba: From Taiwan, this bubble tea chain has all the signs of an authentic Taiwanese tea shop: its menu is ridiculously long; you can customize sweetness, ice, and toppings; it's cash only; there's absolutely no place to sit and chat (you purchase your drink and enjoy it elsewhere); and while there are lines out the door, service is fast. Drinks only come in one (large) size but are very reasonably priced. I ordered their honey brown rice milk tea at 30% sweetness, and the drink was one of the b... (read more) 4.5/5.0

bubbletea 4.5 agar seeds basil tea milk rice brown honey itea boba drink exceptional
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Mr. Wish Black milk tea with boba: While I found the boba to be a bit too chewy, I otherwise found this classic beverage, which was not too sweet (I specified 25% sweetness) to be good. It is unfortunately too common to purchase black milk tea that doesn't actually have any herbal taste; this one fortunately avoids that pitfall. 3.0/5.0

3.0 tea milk black mrwish milktea boba drinks recommended
2016 09 19 16.17.26

Belly Good Cafe & Crepes Black Milk Tea with Boba: To accompany the crepe I purchased at Belly Good Cafe, I purchased a cup of black milk tea with boba. It was probably the single worst bubble tea I've had in my life. The tea had zero herbal flavor and tasted of watered-down sugar water with a bit of dairy. The boba was also complete mush, with no give and a slimy exterior. I hate wasting food, so I did force myself to drink the entire thing, but I will be scarred from drinking bubble tea again in the near future. 0.5/5.0

avoid drinks bellygoodcafecrepes black milk tea boba 0.5
2016 09 18 15.24.40

Boba Guys Coconut green tea with boba: On a Sunday afternoon, the line for the Mission Boba Guys in San Francisco was entirely too long, with about a 13 minute wait to order. I ordered their coconut green tea with organic milk and boba. At 25% sweetness, I still found the drink to be a tad too sweet, which is consistent with my experience at this Boba Guys (compared to the one in NYC, which doesn't seem to add as much sugar). The drink came out at room temperature, but the ice helped bring it down in temperature after a few mi... (read more) 3.0/5.0

drinks bobaguys coconut green tea boba 3.0