A Tale of Two Tapiocas

Though the origins of bubble tea are hotly disputed, one thing is not; the marriage of our pillowy mochi and creamy boba is a perfect union. Now available at our Soho and Upper East Side shops, our bubble tea stays true to the core of what Mochidoki does – serve imagination in every bite by using only the best ingredients and exploring their stories to truly let each flavor shine.

Mochidoki Mochi Ice Cream and Boba Tea

Boba tea's story began in Taiwan in the late 1980’s, where brewed, sweetened, and shaken green or black tea was popular. Deemed “bubble tea” for the froth that formed after the drink is vigorously shaken, boba was an instant hit. Just who came up with the concept of adding tapioca pearls to this style of tea, however, is a controversial topic. 

Two Taiwanese  tea houses lay claim to inventing the combination of tea and tapioca. The first, Hanlin Tea Room, insists its founder came across white tapioca balls on sale at a nearby market and was inspired to add the cooked pearls to milk tea. Chun Shui Tang, a competing tea room, claims that a year later, while on the job, a 20-year-old female employee experimented with adding her favorite tapioca ball snack to tea, giving way to the world’s first pearl milk tea.

Mochidoki Match Bubble Boba Pearl Milk Tea

After much dispute and several lawsuits, both teahouses were unsuccessful in their attempts to patent their new creation and in the years that followed, tea houses across Taiwan featured boba tea. Today, this milky, bouncy textured drink can be found in shops across not only Asia, but around the world.

Mochidoki Hojicha Boba Bubble Pearl Milk Tea

No matter how boba came about, we at Mochidoki admire the spirit of innovation and experimentation that led to creation of this sweet – and beautiful! – tea. Like the two originating tea houses, we get to test out different flavor combinations at our retail shops. Featuring traditional teas like Hojicha and Matcha and more imaginative flavors like Sakura, our constantly rotating boba tea menu pays homage to the curious teamakers who came before us! 

Visit our Mochidoki Soho or Upper East Side store the next time you’re in New York and add a Boba Tea to your Mochi Ice Cream order!