After the horrible lunch experience downtown at a new eatery, I needed a little pick-me-up, so after work I stopped on in to the Fat Straw on the way home for a little treat. I first heard about Fat Straw this weekend, and I was so thrilled to know that Nashville has its first real Bubble Tea place! Bubble tea is a drink with giant tapioca pearls in it. Bubble tea is sipped with a giant straw and every sip you get a round tapioca ball, the texture of a soft gummy bear, to make a really cool textural drink. I love these things. Bubble tea is all the rage in Los Angeles and Chicago, and in China. When I was in Chicago a couple years ago, in the middle of winter, and I found myself standing in line, outside, everyday for a bubble tea. I was not the only fool standing there freezing, there were plenty of people out there with me waiting for their little treat.
When I got to Fat Straw, I already knew what I wanted. I wanted something with mango. I ordered an iced mango green tea bubble tea. How Scot made it was adding mango juice to iced green tea, then putting it in a shaker, and then putting the shaker in the shaking apparatus, and away it shook my drink. He poured my shaken drink over my boba (giant tapioca pearls) and gave me my drink. I sat at the bar, and had a nice chat with Scot to find out more about him and his business, and find out what combinations I could get in bubble tea. I will list some options here: hot or cold. Milk, fruit smoothie or tea based. Flavors like chocolate, peppermint, mango, raspberry, lychee, peach, pineapple, strawberry, blueberry, kiwi, passion fruit, honeydew, coconut, banana, papaya, taro, avocado, almond, red bean, apple, and others. The combinations are endless! Next time I might try an avocado, chocolate hot milk bubble tea with no tea. What do you think?
OK, so I had a little chat about where the name Bubble Tea come from, because it can made without tea, and what is up with the bubbles? What I have heard was that the word for giant tapioca pearls is BOBA in Chinese, so it was called Boba Tea when Bobas were added to iced tea in China. When this drink finally made it across the pond from China, the phonetics turned Boba to Bubble Tea. But, Scot has offered up another version of how Bubble Tea got its name. He said he knows the guy in Taiwan who invented the Bubble Tea shaker machine, and said the original drink was iced tea with sugar shaken a ton, then poured in a glass with a thick layer of tiny bubbles, thus the name Bubble Tea. Scot said that the tapioca pearls came later. Another explanation was that the tapioca pearls getting sucked up in the straw looks like bubbles, thus the name Bubble Tea. What do you think? Let me know what is the origin of the name Bubble Tea.
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