Harrogate might be famous around the world for its tea, but a new kid on the block called bubble tea has arrived with the opening of Sweet Pearl House on Commercial Street.
Bubble tea originated in Taiwan and has gone on to become one of the nation’s best-loved and most recognisable exports with takeaway cafes in cities across the UK.
The drink blends a milk or fruit tea base before the signature “bubbles” are added. The bubbles are made from chewy tapioca pearls, also called boba, that sit at the bottom.
Bubble tea is particularly popular among teenagers and is sucked through an especially large straw, which has enough room to hoover up the bubbles.
The family-run Sweet Pearl House was opened last week by Candy Yip and her husband Man Wong. The couple and their daughter moved to Harrogate from Hong Kong last year.
Ms Yip said she spotted a gap in the market and wanted to share their love of bubble tea as well as traditional Hong Kong egg waffle snacks.
“I think Harrogate loves tea, but I didn’t see any bubble tea places here.
“We love drinking tea so much. We opened the shop to share popular Taiwan tea and Hong Kong traditional eggettes snacks culture to people in Harrogate.”
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Sweet Pearl House offers customers different milk or fruit tea bases, including brown sugar milk, strawberry, matcha, jasmine and oolong.
These are combined with fruity toppings including peach, passion fruit and mango, which are served with the tapioca bubbles.
Most of the drinks can be served hot or cold. Opening hours are from 11.30am to 5.30pm Tuesday to Saturday and from 10.30am to 4.30pm on Sundays.
Almost all the ingredients are imported from Taiwan directly, which Ms Yip says ensures their drinks have the authentic bubble tea taste.
“The bubble milk tea is a unique taste. There really is no other drink like it.”