Tea World

Lesson 31

Taiwanese Tea Tradition

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A modern innovation on Chinese tradition is Taiwanese bubble tea. Taiwanese bubble tea is a high calorie iced tea (black, green, jasmine or oolong typically) with powdered milk and sugary syrup. But the bubbles to which it owes its name are small balls of tapioca, a starchy white grain. The origin of bubble tea only dates back as far as 1988, when Lin Hsiu Hui, a product development manager at the Chun Shui Tang teahouse, dropped some tapioca balls from her fen yuan dessert into her tea during a staff meeting as an  experimental basis. Soon, the teahouse was selling her quirky creation, and in the decades since it has become an international phenomenon with bubble tea shops popping up across Asian, Europe, and the United States.

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