One of Baton Rouge’s newest dining crazes is bubble tea. Every week, it seems there is talk of a new bubble tea or boba joint opening up, offering extensive menus of strange-sounding beverages.
Whether you’ve been sipping on these sweet drinks for ages or you’re just wondering what in the world those black orbs are on the bottom of the drinks you keep seeing everywhere, we’re breaking down the basics.
Milk tea: Also called boba tea and bubble tea, this is the base liquid in the most popular bubble tea beverages. These mix milk and different teas or flavorings—think a melted milkshake! The most popular flavors of milk tea are honey, mango, matcha and taro.
Fruit tea: This is a sweet version of the tea we have come to know and love. They come in a large variety of flavors and sweetness levels. You can add toppings to these teas.
Slush: A lot of bubble tea spots offer slushes. They differ from place to place but usually involve some sort of milk tea or fruit tea blended with ice.
Boba: Also called bubbles or tapioca, these are the black balls at the bottom of your bubble tea. They are made with tapioca starch and brown sugar and are chewy. They add a fun texture and consistency to the bubble tea, and they also contribute to its sweetness level.
Gels, jellies and jelly: Flavored jellies are frequently added to bubble teas in order to enhance sweetness and consistency. The jelly can be more of a spread or form a rectangular layer in the drink.
Red beans: While we tend to think of red beans as savory in south Louisiana, many Asian countries also use them in desserts and ice creams. Some local tea shops offer dried red beans covered in sugar as a drink topping, offering a sweet and earthy taste.
Pudding: A common topping that slowly mixes into your tea as you drink it.
Popping bubbles: One of the most popular add-ons for younger audiences, these look a bit like the tapioca bubbles but actually contain liquid in the center. When you bite down them, they’ll pop and explode with extra flavor. Find flavors like mango, coffee, lychee and more.
Where to get bubble tea in Baton Rouge
The Vietnamese restaurant recently began offering fruit and milk teas. It carries some cool toppings, like passionfruit popping balls and jackfruit.
The sushi and pho restaurant near LSU has expanded its menu to include a few milk tea selections. While it isn’t offering toppings currently, it does have a couple milk tea flavors to choose from.
This bubble tea chain sure knows how to wow customers with every sip. It has an extensive menu ranging from classic milk tea to sweet fruity punches and slushes. It also carries an array of toppings, so you can always try something new.
This Vietnamese cafe offers a huge variety of flavors of boba tea and slushes. Plus, it has a whole menu of great dishes if your hunger can’t be contained by just one drink.
Beyond typical drinks like milk tea and fruit tea, Paradise Smoothie also serves fruit and protein smoothies with the option to add in toppings like tapioca and jellies.
This classic doughnut shop expanded its menu to include a bubble tea selection a few years ago. It offers many flavors of milk teas and frappes with interesting toppings. You can even grab a doughnut while you are there and place it right on top of your drink to take it to that next level of Instagrammable.
This local poke joint has three milk tea options to enjoy. Choose between Thai tea, taro tea and green tea for a refreshing splash of sweetness.
This newer shop has quickly become a favorite for those who find themselves around Towne Center. Not only does Teatery offer different types of teas and beverages, it also has some pretty tasty pastries.
This poke joint carries a few types of bubble tea. Choose between flavored milk tea, green tea or a smoothie, and top it all off with some tapioca bubbles.
Among the rolled ice cream, pastries and other sweet treats at Vanilla Sweet House, the Perkins Road shop also has an impressive variety of bubble tea. You can even get coffee drinks with tapioca toppings.
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This nationwide chain is extremely popular in New York, but that doesn’t mean it’s not making a name for itself here in the Red Stick. The shop is known for its wild milk tea creations and expansive menu.