Here’s What Drink Concoction You Should Order At Each Tea Shop

city543-theme-film-icon-may-2015 Coinciding with the onset of the hottest season of the year, this month is all about that sweltering heat, Kenting beach and brain freeze from the icy summer sips—bubble tea, cocktails and beers.

 

Hot sultry summers are best enjoyed on the rocks. Enter the tea shop, a casual take on tea houses à la Chun Shui Tang (春水堂)—the birthplace of the pearl milk tea. Now ubiquitous across much of the island, tea shops provide the single best solution for those melting from the heat; iced, hand-mixed drinks ordered to-go. But don’t you hate it when you order a beverage out of curiosity—its name sounded exotic and you were feeling adventurous—only to find it’s nothing you imagined to say the least. No one simply has the patience in this kind of temperature, and the level of frustration is made exponentially worse in the heat. Thankfully you can now avoid that entirely with this list of our recommended drinks from each tea shop.

50 Lan (50嵐)

Customers never have to worry about a disparity between the various branches of Taiwan’s most popular tea shop thanks to the chain’s strict quality control. 50 Lan’s tea selection may be considered rudimentary—black, green, oolong, nothing too fancy—but the shop is considered the definitive tea shop, offering the tea shop “essentials”. It’s practically impossible to go wrong here—the pearl milk tea is always a solid choice—but drinks tend to be on the sweet side so it’s not unusual to reduce the sugar dosage.

Recommended drinks:

  • Ice Cream Black Tea (冰淇淋紅茶): Vanilla ice cream added to black tea for a bit of a guilty pleasure. Ease the fat by opting for the Black Tea Latte (紅茶拿鐵).
  • No. 8 Green Tea (八冰綠): The store’s other signature drink mixes kumquat juice, plum juice and green tea to create a slightly bitter yet tangy drink with a pulpy texture.

image via solmag

Coco (都可)

coco drinks boba taipei taiwan

Known primarily for its fruit-based, “clear” drinks, Coco has expanded to several countries around the globe since it was founded in 1997. Coco’s milk tea is pre-mixed, making for a different taste from other milk teas. The store only offers pearls in the large size (boba).

Recommended drinks:

  • Lemon Winter Melon Juice (檸檬冬瓜露): Fresh lemon juice mixed with old-fashioned winter melon juice is sure to hit the spot on a hot summer’s day.
  • Passion Fruit Tea with Pearl and Coconut Jelly (百香雙響炮): The vitamin-rich passionfruit tea helps cleanse the body and aid digestion while the coconut jelly and boba provide the chewy fun.

Tea Patea (茶湯會)

tea patea drinks store shop taiwan milk tieguanyin cups

With roots tied to the birthplace of pearl milk tea, Chun Shui Tang—apparently founded by an ex-employee—Tea Patea offers a cheaper alternative to the former. Tea Patea is known for its high caliber teas, as well as their strong flavor.

Recommended drinks:

  • Tieguanyin Latte (觀音拿鐵): Tea Patea’s Tieguanyin Latte is unparalleled elsewhere. Pure, fresh milk is blended with the premium variety of Chinese oolong tea, which preserves its scent and flavor.
  • Anything with Tieguanyin: If you’re not a fan of milk-based drinks, then try the Guanyin Jixiang (觀音桔祥)—tieguanyin tea mixed with kumquat juice and aloe bits—or the Winter Melon Tieguanyin (冬瓜觀音).

image via Tea Patea

KingTea (清玉)

003系列飲品_系列飲品

When life gives you lemons, you make Lemon Green Tea. That’s KingTea’s motto, well, we sure think so. KingTea has so perfected the zesty beverage that it lays claims to a golden ratio of lemon juice, green tea, ice and sugar syrup. A sight for sore eyes in the urban metropolis—light green walls, orange brick counters and baskets of fresh limes laid out on the side of the road—KingTea has solidify its place as the number one lemon green tea store in all of Taiwan.

Recommended drink:

  • Lemon Green Tea (翡翠檸檬): Freshly squeezed on the spot for that extra zing, the drink made of all natural ingredients is the ultimate refresher. Keep in mind you can adjust the golden ratio to taste.

image via Kingyo

Oregin (圓石禪飲)

oregin bottle tea boba milk green taipei taiwan

Oregin is a bit of an insider secret. With fewer storefronts than other tea shop chains, Oregin serves up amazing tea—brewed in low temperatures to preserve its essence—in innovative, minimalistic packaging. Drinks come in two sizes, the regular L and XL, a square-based one-plus liter bottle with a screw-on lid that will quench the thirstiest of drinkers. The reusable, especially-designed and limited edition bottles has tea lovers and collectors coming back again and again.

Recommended drinks:

  • Gyokuro (冷泉玉露): Japanese variety of shaded green tea brewed in low temperatures. Best enjoyed sugar-free, although not recommended for caffeine addicts.
  • Retro Black Tea Latte (復刻鮮奶茶): Relive the ages with one of the best done Taiwanese old-time black teas with milk. Pre-mixed to perfection, sugar level non-adjustable.

image via Oregin

Presotea (鮮茶道)

Presotea drink shop tea boba milk green taiwan taipei

 

Presotea rejects the usual high-temperature, high-pressure bulk brewing techniques of most tea shops, opting instead to brew each order with individual tea bags. And the results are evident; the flavor of the tea really comes through, not the least overwhelmed by the taste of the various flavorful additions.

Recommended drinks:

  • QQ Fruit Green Tea (鮮果雙Q綠茶):  Cool down with passion fruit tea mixed with coconut jelly and large pearls.
  • Hojicha Tea Latte With Pearls (焙茶珍珠拿鐵): A Japanese macha tea latte with a slight hint of seaweed, traditional and distinctive.

image via terbaru

Comebuy

comebuy tea shop drink boba milk double q

Comebuy takes the typical menu selection and adds a quirky spin to it with out-of-the-box combinations you won’t find elsewhere. The shop uses loose leaf brewing technology, and drinks are brewed to order.

Recommended drinks: 

  • QQ Milk Tea (雙Q奶茶): The alternative take on the pearl milk tea adds vermicelli made from mung bean starch (粉條) to the pearls. For those who want to chew as well as sip.
  • Peach Oolong (白桃烏龍): A unique and peachy sweet combination.

image via ddmap

Chinghsin (清心福全)

chinghsin tea bubble boba taiwan drink

Chingshin’s polystyrene cups and green plastic bags made up the childhood memories of many a 90s kid. Formed in 1987, the age-tested chain has the most branches in Taiwan and remains a throwback to the traditional local Taiwanese lifestyle with its retro metal counters and no-frills decor and packaging.

Recommended drinks:

  • Oolong Green Tea (烏龍綠茶): A classic taste pioneered by Chinghsin for decades, the Oolong Green Tea proves that drinking tea ain’t just for grandpas.
  • Yakult Green Tea (多多綠茶): sweet and sour, childhood flavors.

Tenren Cha FOR TEA (天仁喫茶趣)

tenren cha for tea drink boba milk banner

Tenren’s dedication to quality has cemented it as both a premium tea supplier as well as an established brand. Drinks tend cost a bit more than those at other stores, but all for good reason. You can truly taste the quality of the Chinese tea leaves, and every sip is a treat for your palate.

Recommended drinks:

  • 913 Ginseng Oolong Tea Latte (913鮮奶茶): A different taste of oolong, the 913 tea is considered a signature of Tenren and can be enjoyed with milk, milk powder or on its own sans milk.
  • Honey Green Tea (蜂蜜綠茶): Real honey blended with top-notch green tea. A classic cool and sweet option.

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