Whether you’ve actually heard of bubble tea or not, Tbaar Inc. has made its way to Newark. What used to be found in a few whole-in-the-wall places can now be found without trekking off campus. Google ‘bubble tea in Newark’ and you’ll get tons of hits that kind of all sound the same, even Central Perk has hopped onto the band wagon, but one place that stands out for its authentic menu and prime location is Tbaar Delaware, connected to Chef Tan. It seemed like a good place to try bubble tea for the very first time, and not just because its conveniently right next to Catherine Rooney’s.
It can be easy to question new foods, especially when you aren’t exactly sure what a tapioca ball is. Vanilla milk bubble tea seemed like a safe choice in this situation. Really any flavor option, from black tea to honeydew milk, seemed delicious. I could have easily gone for a fresh smoothie or hot tea, but the bubbles were calling my name.
Using what seemed like an excessively large straw to drink the tea seemed unnecessary at first. Then the first tapioca ball made its way up. I had to pull away from the straw and slowly chew the tapioca, which turns out aren’t even the bubbles that the name refers to. I’ve never been so thrown off by the texture of something before. The best way to describe them is a cross between a grape, gum, and what I can only imagine those water drop cakes feel like. The flavor is normal, but the way they pop in your mouth is a new experience.
The straw wasn’t big enough for the both of them, so the balls and tea seem to take turns. This called for a lot of surprised facing and pausing on my part.
I finished the whole drink and I was still not used to the tapioca balls. I don’t know if I’ll ever get used to them but I plan on finding out as I try new flavors. If you have yet to try bubble tea, you’re missing out. Put down that ice Dunkin Coolatta and give Tbaar a try.