Bubble tea, often referred to as boba, has become a cafe staple across Portland over the last decade: Once only found in a small collection of oddball bubble tea shops, the drink can now be found everywhere from specialty cafes to international franchise locations.
A tea-based drink named for its chewy tapioca pearls, boba has Taiwanese roots, but the drink has now grown into a global phenomenon with countless variations. The best way to determine the quality of a bubble tea drink is by the flavor of the tea and the texture of the tapioca pearls: A good milk tea should have bold tea flavor, with pearls that are soft but not mushy. Brewing methods vary from shop to shop but generally involve either an artificial powder, tea concentrate, or flavored syrup. With near infinite combinations, each shop has its distinctive teas and creative additions beyond the traditional tapioca. Below, find an assortment of cafes shaking and stirring bubble tea, from Beaverton to Sunnyside.Read More