Friday, 19 November 2010
Bubble Cafe, Manchester
A tea party with a difference!
If you don't want your tea hot or in a bag, where do you go? If you're sick to death with the cheesy marketing of Innocent Smoothies and want to avoid those annoying ubiquitous drinks chains, where do you seek your refuge? If you want to drink, rather than eat a buffet in Chinatown, where do you chill out? Readers, I have the solution.
The Bubble Cafe in Portland Street has plenty of tea varieties but not as we know it! It is a Vietnamese owned cafe and sells smoothies, hot chocolate and tea with a twist. The name of the game, the USP if you may, is the fact that everything comes with bubbles. But what are bubbles I hear you ask?
Bubble Tea is an Asian trend (and not a fad as the menu in BC says) and consists of iced teas in varying flavours having tapioca balls in the bottom of the glass. These balls ave a distinct chocolatey flavour and a chewy texture and add to the drinking experience. You can suck them up through the fat straw provided or scoop 'em out with a spoon. BC offers a special combination of tapioca bubbles and coconut jelly, enhancing the experience. This is one of those unusual combinations that happens to work, a bit like chips and vinegar, and once you've tried it, you will definitely return for more. All the trendsters in Taiwan can't get enough of this delectable drink and Bubble Tea chains spring up all over the place there like mushrooms. Manc will be following suit, if the popularity of BC is anything to go by, promoted for free by student groups' word of mouth and bloggers like myself. If you wander through Chinatown and peruse the menus, 2 more outlets, namely Ho's and Try Thai are jumping on the bandwagon- before you know it, ~Manchester will be gripped by bubble fever!
For a winter treat, you can also take hot choc with bubbles and coconut, and for those balmy summer nights, try my favourite, the mango slush with bubbles. The staff are ever so helpful and realise the Bubble phenomenon is new in the UK, and are happy to advise and explain. BC will also be launching some Vietnamese dishes like spring rolls and casseroles, so watch this space for a possible restaurant review!
So, if you're ever thirsty in Chinatown, or got some time to kill waiting for the coach (BC is opposite Chorlton St bus station), pop in to BC and become part of the Bubble Phenomenon. Trust me, you will be hooked....