Bubble Tea launches in Jozi

When I heard that the “international trend” of bubble tea had arrived in Jozi, I was a little taken aback and almost embarrassed. I’m always on the lookout for different food and drinks when I’m abroad, and I’d never come across bubble tea. Very quickly, pics of the milky drink began to fill my Instagram timeline, while Twitter was buzzing with people tweeting about its deliciousness.

So, I went to try it out, at the happy.me bubble tea bar in Greenside, the first of its kind in SA (there are plans to roll out more stores in the rest of SA next year). The set up of the store is really cool, there’s a huge tree in the middle, a grass wall and a few tables and benches. I think it’s more of a takeaway place. I love love love the branding, and it’s been carried through very well throughout the store. The tag line is “chilling, thinking, dreaming”, which is kind of what everyone wants to do- right? 

So what is bubble tea, actually, you ask? Imagine a thinned out smoothie, with exotic toppings like black pearls and popping pearls, which pop in your mouth. I tasted mostly milky teas (I enquired about the KJ content of these because they are milky AND sweet), but there are also black teas and green teas on the menu. The coffee-holics needn’t feel left out, because happy.me stocks a really fancy espresso machine (the only one in the country) which is the official espresso machine used at the World Barista Championships. 

Chocolate oreo and cream
Pink lemon and lime

Now, I enjoyed the tea, and I’d probably pick up one if I was in the area… but it didn’t blow me away. It was nice. I think the idea is cool, and we definitely need more beverage bars in SA, but I think in Jozi people have short attention spans: things become trendy for a short while (think Cinnabon, and then Wakaberry/ Filo yoghurt), and then people move onto the next trend… which currently happens to be bubble tea. Who knows, maybe this one will last 🙂 

happy.me is situated at 127 Greenway Road, Village Green Shopping Centre, Greenside (next to Woolies) 

xx H