Inside: Join along as I explore this hidden gem for the best bubble tea in Columbus. So delicious!
I recently had a friend ask me if I had been to a certain bubble tea shop in Columbus. When I told her I hadn’t, she smiled, looked me dead in the eye, and said “We should go. I think it’s the best bubble tea in Columbus.”
And here’s the thing, I totally trust her judgement. She used to teach English in Asia and has never led me astray when it comes to food. So the other day, in the middle of the afternoon, we snuck out together so I could see if it was indeed, the “best bubble tea in Columbus.”
The Best Bubble Tea in Columbus?
Bubble tea. Milk Tea. Boba. Tapioca fruit tea. Pearl tea. No matter what you call it, it’s delicious!
I am a huge fan of bubble tea! In fact, there’s a picture of me slurping some bubble tea on the home page of this blog. Columbus is no stranger to bubble tea and we have lots of options to choose from.
What the heck is bubble tea anyway?
If you’re sitting there trying to figure out what the heck I’m referring to, let me give you a little background. There are as many bubble tea origination stories as there are chopsticks in China.
Ok, I’m exaggerating. But only a little.
Most people seem to agree that it got its start in Taiwan in the early ’80’s. The most popular story goes that it was started by a man who owned a small stand in the local market that served hot tea and desserts. On a hot day, he had observed some Japanese tourists enjoying their coffee chilled, and decided to try the same thing with tea. He added some balls made from tapioca (a common dessert), ice, tea, and flavoring to a cup, place a lid on top, and shook it vigorously to mix together.
Some people claim the name “Bubble Tea” comes from the resulting bubbles when the tea is shaken to blend. That’s the clean version. I won’t go into the dirty version because you can just google it, people!
How Do You Order Bubble Tea?
For the uninitiated, ordering bubble tea can seem intimidating. So let me break it down for you.
Step 1: Pick your tea and flavor
Decide between choices like oolong, green, black, etc. Also decide if you’d like a fruity flavor, like mango, apple, strawberry…
Step 2: Decide between iced and blended
Simple – choose between over ice or blended up.
Step 3: Pick your type of milk (or opt for no milk)
Decide if you’d like some milk. Popular choices include vanilla, coconut, almond, etc
Step 4: Pick your topping
This is the fun part. Choose between things like boba (tapioca balls), fruit, fruit jelly, aloe, wild rice, popping boba (little balls that BURST when you bite them and flood your mouth with flavor), pudding or even CREAM CHEESE. Amazing right!?
The Best Bubble Tea in Columbus – The Brewed Leaf
So now that you know how to order yourself a glass of bubble tea – allow me to explain why I think that the Brewed Leaf offers the BEST bubble tea in Columbus.
Their name gives you an important clue – all their tea is brewed from tea leaves!
Most places will use powdered tea, full of dyes and sugar. At the Brewed Leaf, every drink starts off with freshly brewed tea. Because there are no additives and no powders, you can control the amount of flavor and sweetener in your drink!
They use authentic family recipes brought over China
No neon dyes, or sickly sweet concoctions here, folks. Just high quality tea and trusted family recipes. Plus all the authentically cool toppings like wild rice, aloe, cheese, and pudding. Mmmmm.
FREE wifi and a super cute shop.
Ok, so wifi is important people. And their space is bright, airy, and oh-so-chill. The perfect spot to grab some liquid gold and settle in to get your work vibes going.
And most importantly….
Their Bubble Tea is freaking delicious!
For research purposes, I made sure I tried a wide variety of options. (Also because…yum)
The first was a classic black milk tea with tapioca balls. This is my “gold standard” of bubble teas. You could taste the brewed leaf tea flavor and it was perfectly sweetened without being too sugary. The tapioca balls were also delicious! My 6 year old refers to this tea as a “combo drink and snack” and she’s not wrong. You’ll love the fun, chewy texture of the tapioca!
Next up was a blended tea. This was was the strawberry cream smoothie. It reminded me of a milkshake and would be the perfect option for kids or anyone else who doesn’t care for the taste of a strong tea. It was refreshing and light and perfectly sweetened.
The last thing I tried was my FAVORITE. Looking at this picture is making me crave it something awful and I suspect I’m going to have to head over to the Brewed Leaf tomorrow. This was SO GOOD. It was a passionfruit green tea with a PUDDING topping. That’s right folks, pudding. In a glass of tea. I don’t know who came up with such madness but it’s pure genius. The pudding tastes like a light vanilla flan and it’s such a fun combo.
That’s it. I’m stopping in tomorrow to get my tea fix. See you there?
The Brewed Leaf
809 Bethel Rd
Columbus, OH 43214