Boba Brew 


Making Tapioca Tea on a wooden counter using a cocktail shaker and a clear highball glass, tea milk concentrate and tapioca balls

Tapioca Tea 

Are you feeling bubbly? We sure are. With spring blooms in full swing and warmer temps teasing us every other day, we are so excited to be bringing back our seasonal blend - Sugrisma Summer Masala Chai.

Summer masala chai has a light sweet aroma, uplifting your senses with nuttiness from cardamom, spice from cinnamon, and fresh grassy notes of fennel. With gingery headnotes, woody, cooling body notes, and a fresh fennel finish, end this tea cools you from within. 

This tea tastes great with Chocolate Carmel-Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies a tas'tea pairing - find the recipe HERE.

The perfect Chilled Chai for spring is Sugrishma boba tea. This tea'licious brew is made using Chai, coconut milk, sweetener, and tapioca balls, all shaken together like a martini and served with a notoriously fat straw to allow slurping the tapioca balls. Also known as bubble tea or pearl tea, boba brew has its roots in Taiwan. The term boba can be used for milky beverages or similar drinks made using tapioca balls; sometimes, the balls themselves are called boba balls. Naugh'tea alert- the origin of the name boba is a reference to Hong Kong sex symbol from the 1980's - Amy Yip, whose nickname, "Boba," is also a Chinese slang term for her most famous physical assets.

Boba is made using tapioca starch, an extract of the Cassava Plant from South America. If you're wondering how this extract came to Taiwan, it was introduced to that part of the world during the Japanese rule. 

Tapioca pearls start as white balls that are tough and tasteless. These are boiled inside giant vats and steeped in caramelized syrup until they transform into black bouncy, chewy boba we know and love. 

Tapioca Tea has evolved to include so many types of tea. The pearls can be any shape, square, round, heart, shaped like berries. They can be flavored with caramel, fruity or chocolatey. They can be black, red, purple, multicolored, or even transparent. Boba bars often offer add-on's like grass jelly, aloe vera jelly, nut jelly, pudding jelly, adzuki beans, panna cotta, chia seeds, sweet potato balls, even cookies, and choco chips to add to your brew. Some places even offer spicy pepper boba, umami mushroom boba, tomato boba for green detox tea, or sea salt boba. 

The tea can be made using milk which can be whole, skimmed, powdered, or plant-based, and served chilled or warm. Some boba drinks skip the black tea altogether, instead using green tea, herbal tea, or fruit juice like mango, melon, or healthy greens. They come topped off with seeds or other herbs and condiments. 

The boba experience is so versatile; you can tailor it to your preference. 
If you want a healthy tea, brew boba with Anurakti Green Tea and honey. If you're feeling adventurous and want to try something new, use The Chai Bar's Aprajita Blend to make a Butterfly Blue Boba Brew. It is sure to make an Insta-worthy drink; with the blend's color-changing mystique, which can turn from blue to indigo, purple or red, you're sure to get a ravishing reel. 

Looking to make a boozy brew? Mix the tapioca balls and tea with your favorite spirit and kick-off cocktail night on a high note. 

If you like taro tea, a lilac nutty thick brew made using taro root; you're sure to like Gulabi- Kashmiri Pink Chai Boba Brew. Brew the blend, add the boba and top off with Rani Rose Sugar, nuts, and glazed rose petals.

If you're going to stick to the more traditional way of making black boba tea, use Sugrishma - Summer Masala Black Tea or Mangalyam - Marigold Lavender Black Tea. For extra oomph, add floral sugar to the brew. 

While boba tea is trendy like all tas'tea treats, it must be consumed responsibly. Make sure to consume reasonable quantities and allow your body time to digest the tapioca pearls. Like caffeinated drinks, this beverage too is not advised for children. 

Here is the recipe for The Chai Bar's Black Tapioca Tea




  1. Boil the tapioca pearls for 15 minutes, 
  2. Turn off the heat and let them sit for 4 minutes to absorb more moisture. 
  3. Make a rose sugar simple syrup
  4. Strain the tapioca balls, run them under cool water, and then add them to the cooled simple syrup and chill
  5. Brew a concentrated chai by boiling 5 tbsp Chai in 3 cups of water and reducing it to 2 cups. 
  6. Chill the chai concentrate.  
  7. Fill a shaker with 1/2 cup of coconut milk. 
  8. Add 1 tbsp rose sugar or honey to taste. 
  9. Add 4 tbsp tapioca pearls to the glass.
  10. Add 3/4th cup of chai concentrate. 
  11. Add ice and shake it like Shakira
  12. Serve in a tall glass with your fav topping and an extra-wide reusable straw. 
  13. Sip and Slurp. 

TEA'P: Tapioca pearls take on the flavor of what they are soaked in post-cooking, so if you want an extra burst of flavor, soak them overnight in a combination of Karak chai (strong concentrated tea and rose sugar simple syrup) 

We hope you try different types of tapioca tea in the warmer months to come. We have been bubbly since getting the first round of the Covid-19 vaccine. It's the hope that spring brings with it new life, new beginnings, and the prospect of summer. Get vaccinated if you can, enjoy the warmer weather, sing a song, do a dance, everything's going to be Tapi'okay. 


Co-Authored by Sargam & Madura. 

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