Boba Tea, also called bubble tea, is a popular drink of many, especially here at Penn State. With an abundance businesses to visit, which boba shop is right for you? VALLEY suggests new lovers of boba to dip their toes into each of the boba shops around town to get a feel of which one checks all the boxes. From the menu, ambiance and location, there are many different aspects that make each shop special, which is why VALLEY is here to provide a guide to navigate each shop downtown and their delicious drinks and mouth watering treats.
What is Boba Milk Tea?
First things first: If you have never tried boba, you may be wondering what your taste buds are in for. Originating from Taiwan, boba tea at its most basic self is comprised of black tea, milk and the famous, chewy tapioca pearls. The pearls take their chewy form after being boiled and carmelized in a syrup, creating soft pearls that are simply irresistible. Once all the ingredients are in together, they are shaken up and served with a thick straw (to enjoy the pearls.)
As with many drinks, there are endless boba tea recipes and flavor combinations.
If you want to try the classic style, VALLEY recommends ordering a milk tea. This variation is boba at its finest: black tea, milk and pearls.
If you are a fan of fresh flavors, try out a fruit-filled tea. Practically any fruit you can think of, most likely has a flavor. If fruit is calling your name, you can even try out fruit-based pearls and jelly.
If rich, brown sugar sounds appetizing, VALLEY suggests to try out a brown sugar tea. This variation is an enhanced version of the classic milk tea. Essentially, a heavy brown sugar syrup is mixed throughout, creating a visually stunning drink that tastes even better than it looks.
The Boba Crawl
Now onto the part you have been waiting for. VALLEY has put together a list of boba shops in downtown State College so that you can go on a ‘boba crawl’ to find your favorite spots.
Kung Fu Tea
Located on 320 W. Beaver Ave., Kung Fu Tea is a well-loved boba tea chain that features an extensive menu, featuring items such as the bestselling Oreo Wow and Mango Tea Punch. Kung Fu Tea offers various toppings as well for your drink, including some unique ones such as, crystal bubbles, pudding, and coffee popping bubbles.
If you live on the west side of campus and you want many drink options to choose from, Kung Fu Tea may be the shop to hit up.
For more information and online ordering, you can visit the Kung Fu Tea website.
If you are looking for a shop with a comforting ambiance and friendly charm, check on Momotaro at 222 W. College Ave. This shop is special, as it is known for having not only amazing boba, but delicious handcrafted desserts as well.
The handcrafted rolled ice cream is a must-have treat when at Momotaro. Pairing perfectly with the Classic Milk Tea or the Strawbery Love Potion, you can choose from a variety of ice cream flavors such as strawberry, cheesecake and cinnamon swirl, and toppings ranging from mochi, red beans and to pocky sticks.
On top of having delicious drinks and pastries, Momotaro is a great spot to grind out some homework and studying thanks to the comfortable decor. For example, around the shop you can find funny, uplifting handwritten notes from customers that are sure to get your spirits up.
You can find Momotaro’s full menu here, along with more information about the shop.
Nestled below Urban Outfitters, Cafe Wow offers a great selection of boba tea and desserts. From tea and juice, milk tea to smoothies, Cafe Wow has it all. Cafe Wow offers yummy desserts such as a strawberry mousse cake and nutella crepe cake.
If you are looking for a chill place to enjoy your boba with some friends or to get some work done, Cafe Wow may be your go-to shop.
You can visit Cafe Wow at 234 E. College Ave. For online ordering and more information, check out their Facebook page.
A new boba shop, called Mr. Wish, is part of the Aone Mart, at 320 E. College Ave. Mr. Wish has an extensive menu, with items such as the refreshing Kiwi Green Tea and the rich Red Bean Pudding Milk Tea.
If you are searching for more than just boba, the mart also offers food from Hibachi Express. While you are drinking some boba, shop around!
You can place an order for Mr.Wish here.
Have you ever tried boba tea? Do you have a favorite shop that wasn’t mentioned? Let VALLEY know your thoughts by tweeting us, @VALLEYmag, on Twitter!