Over the past few years, boba tea has spread in popularity around the Chippewa Valley (as well as across the country). More specifically, I would argue a good amount of that local prominence has come via Star Cup. (My wife actually did a story on them when they opened; given her love of Asian food, that made sense. Ever since, I often see her bring home Star Cup beverages when she’s at Oakwood Mall.) Seeing how boba tea is somewhat of a sweeter beverage, I thought I’d take a turn at writing about Star Cup and the beverage sensation that’s been sweeping the nation:

The boba tea (Thai tea, in this instance).

Boba tea is also known as bubble tea; it’s Taiwanese in origin. The basic type involves tea, many times mixed with milk or some sort of creamer, then with tapioca pearls at the base. When you go to Star Cup and look at the menu, you’ll observe that all sorts of varieties can be had: different teas, different flavors, plus poppers and jellies to go at the bottom.

Ready for consumption.

I decided to go with Thai tea (involving black tea and cream among other ingredients), plus the classic tapioca pearls at the base. The drink was cold, and the pearls warm, for a neat temperature contrast. After you spike the straw through the plastic top, you get the slightly sugary flavor of the tea — of course, I had to go right for a pearl to suck out. The black tapioca pearls are chewy, with almost a licorice flavor — again, a balance of sweet and tart. Depending on how fast you drink the tea, you end up with a whole lot of pearls (or, if you had chosen, jellies or poppers) to have as a pseudo post-dessert to suck out one-by-one (or two-by-two). It’s a fun beverage.

The tapioca pearls cluster at the base.

You can find Star Cup in two spots: on North Barstow in downtown Eau Claire, and at Oakwood Mall. If you have not yet tried boba, try Star Cup (especially the fruity versions come summertime). Spill the tea…but don’t spill THE tea.

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