Chinese Bubble Tea 101: Best Brands To Look Out For

bubble tea, chinese bubble tea

Chinese bubble tea is a popular drink that has overtaken the world. It originated in Taiwan and is now served in cafes and restaurants worldwide. Bubble tea is also known as milk tea, boba tea or pearl tea because of the small tapioca pearls that sink to the bottom.

There are many types of Chinese bubble teas on the market, so knowing which one to choose can be difficult. Here are some of the most popular brands you might want to try:

Heytea 喜茶

Heytea, one of the most popular Chinese milk tea brands, has taken the world by storm with its unique and delicious drinks. Founded in 2012 in Jiangmen province, Heytea has quickly gained a huge following thanks to its high-quality teas and innovative ingredients. With over 400 stores across China and branches in Singapore, Japan, South Korea, and, more recently, the United States, Heytea is rapidly becoming a global phenomenon.

One of the reasons for Heytea’s success is its focus on using fresh ingredients. The brand takes pride in sourcing only premium teas from around China to create its signature flavours. Their use of fresh fruits like strawberries and kiwis also sets them apart from other milk tea brands. Combining these high-quality ingredients results in refreshing and flavorful drinks without being too sweet or artificial.

Nayuki’s Tea 奈雪的茶

Nayuki’s Tea is one of the most popular Chinese milk tea brands, and for a good reason. The company was founded in 2015 by three entrepreneurs passionate about creating unique and flavorful milk tea beverages. Nayuki’s Tea has since become a household name in China, with more than 200 stores nationwide.

One of Nayuki’s Tea’s biggest draws is its commitment to using high-quality ingredients. The company sources its tea leaves from select regions in China and Japan, ensuring that each cup of milk tea is bursting with flavour. In addition, Nayuki’s Tea uses fresh fruit in many of its drinks, adding a natural sweetness that perfectly complements the rich taste.

LeLeCha 乐乐茶

LeLeCha is one of the most popular Chinese milk tea brands that has taken the world by storm. This brand has become a favourite among tea lovers worldwide with a wide range of flavours. The company was founded in 2016 and has since expanded its reach to more than 100 stores across China and other countries.

One of the main reasons behind LeLeCha’s success is its unique blend of traditional Chinese tea with modern flavours. Every drink is carefully crafted to suit customers’ tastes, from classic jasmine green tea to innovative cheese foam toppings. In addition, LeLeCha uses only high-quality ingredients sourced from trusted suppliers to ensure the freshness and taste of its products.

Yi Dian Dian 一点点

Yi Dian Dian is also a popular Chinese milk tea brand that has been around for over a decade. It was established in 2010 and has since become a household name among milk tea lovers in China. The brand’s popularity can be attributed to its unique taste, affordable prices, and quality ingredients.

One of the reasons why Yi Dian Dian stands out from other milk tea brands is that it uses fresh ingredients to make its drinks. Every ingredient in their drinks, from real tea leaves to fresh fruits, is carefully selected to ensure customers get the best possible taste. In addition, Yi Dian Dian offers various flavours that cater to different tastes and preferences.


Another popular and well-known brand of Chinese milk tea that has taken the world by storm is Coco. With its unique blend of tea leaves, milk, and other ingredients, Coco has become a go-to choice for many consumers looking for a delicious and refreshing drink.

One of the reasons why Coco has gained such popularity is because of its wide range of flavours. From classic milk tea to fruity blends like strawberry and mango, there’s something for everyone. In addition, Coco also offers add-ons like boba pearls or jelly that can be added to any drink for an extra burst of flavour.

Another reason why people love Coco is because of its commitment to using high-quality ingredients. The brand uses only premium tea leaves from China’s Fujian province, fresh milk, and natural sweeteners like honey.

Happy Lemon 快乐柠檬

Happy Lemon has gained widespread popularity across the globe. The brand was established in 2006 and quickly became a hit among milk tea lovers. Happy Lemon’s success can be attributed to its unique and innovative flavours and commitment to using high-quality ingredients.

One of the signature drinks offered by Happy Lemon is the “Rock Salted Cheese” series, which has become a fan favourite globally. This creamy drink consists of rock salt-infused cheese foam topped with various tea flavours, such as green or black tea, making for a perfect blend of sweet and salty flavours. Other popular drinks include fruit teas like grapefruit or lemon juices mixed with fresh fruits.

Honey Snow City 蜜雪冰城

Honey Snow City has recently become one of the most popular Chinese milk tea brands. Its unique blend of classic and modern flavours has quickly gained a loyal following among tea lovers.

The brand’s signature drink is the Honey Snow Pearl Milk Tea, which features chewy tapioca pearls combined with a creamy milk tea base and honey drizzle on top. Other popular drinks include the Brown Sugar Boba Milk Tea and the Cheese Foam Jasmine Green Tea.

Honey Snow City’s commitment to using high-quality ingredients and innovative recipes sets it apart from other milk tea brands. They also offer a wide range of customisation options, allowing customers to adjust sweetness levels and add additional toppings such as fruit jelly or pudding. For those looking for an exciting twist on traditional milk tea, Honey Snow City is worth a try!

Cha Yan Yue Se 茶颜悦色

Cha Yan Yue Se is a household name for Chinese milk tea brands. The brand has been around for over a decade and has amassed a massive following over the years. Its popularity can be attributed to its unique blend of flavours and quality ingredients used to produce its beverages.

One thing that sets Cha Yan Yue Se apart from other milk tea brands is the extensive range of flavours. From classic milk tea to fruit-infused teas, there is something for everyone. The brand also offers customisable options where customers can choose their preferred sweetness and ice levels.


Recently, Chinese bubble tea, boba tea, has become a global phenomenon. Made with brewed tea, milk, and tapioca pearls, bubble tea comes in various flavours and can be served hot or cold. Whether you are a newcomer to bubble tea or simply looking to expand your palate, we hope this beginner’s guide has introduced you to some of the most popular Chinese milk tea brands.

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What does Chinese bubble tea taste like?

Most varieties typically have a base of black or green tea mixed with milk and sugar syrup. Combining these ingredients creates a creamy and sweet flavour with a slight bitterness from the tea leaves.

Is Chinese bubble tea good for you?

While bubble tea can be a tasty treat, it’s important to consider its impact on your health. The sugar content in many bubble teas can be high, leading to weight gain and tooth decay. Additionally, some types of bubble tea may contain additives or artificial flavours that can be harmful over time.

Why is it called boba?

Boba” originally referred to the small, black tapioca pearls added to the drink. These pearls, also known as “tapioca balls,” were first introduced in Taiwan in the 1980s.

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