Boba that Can’t be Beat

By Winnie Wang

If you’re looking to try another bubble tea place, you’re in luck! Located at 2667 Broadway between 102nd and 101st, Shiny Tea recently opened its second branch – the first located in Flushing – and added itself to the limited number of bubble tea shops on the Upper West Side.

The store itself is quite tiny in comparison to TeaMagic, Culture Tea Bar, and Café East. Okay, it’s literally a hole-in-the-wall. There’s no seating area for students to sit and study while enjoying their drinks, and the maximum number of customers that could fit in there would probably be three.screen-shot-2016-10-31-at-12-37-09-pm

But we all know the most important thing is the taste of their bubble tea.

Personally, this is by far the best boba spot for its price on the Upper West Side. The milk tea isn’t made from powder; it’s authentic, freshly brewed Taiwanese tea. The boba here is chewy, sweet, has a nice texture, and is a perfect mix with the milk tea itself. Chip Skylark would suggest you take proper care of your teeth after having one of their delicious concoctions. If you’re tired of the same old black pearls, they also offer mini-white pearls, though I suggest you sip with caution. Because of their smaller size, the white pearls can sometimes choke you if you’re not careful. If you’re looking to try both, they have a “Panda Milk Tea” that combines the two types of pearls into one.

At Shiny Tea, you can customize the amount of ice (more, less, none) and sugar levels (80%, 50%, 30%, none). Unless it’s blistering hot outside, I personally recommend ordering your drinks with “less ice” or “no ice,” so that you’ll have more to drink. If you’re ever planning on saving your drink until you get home, then I suggest “no ice” so it won’t be watered down.

If you’re not a fan of very sweet bubble tea, I suggest you ask for either 50% or 30% sugar. While Shiny Tea’s bubble tea has a stronger tea taste than most, the lowered sweetness level will bring out the tea even more. Of course, it all comes down to personal preference.

The staff members here have always been extremely pleasant whenever I visited. They are helpful and willing to offer advice should you need help navigating their menu. With so many choices to choose from, you may just need to ask for some suggestions!

There’s also no minimum if you want to pay by card, unlike many other places. Also, if you show them your student ID, you can get 10% off your purchase.

However, if you don’t show your ID and pay full price for the drinks, you can ask for a stamp card. For every 10 full priced drinks you buy, you can get a free one on your next visit.

Although a trip to Shiny Tea requires a bit of walk, I always feel as though the trek was worth it. Boba lovers should definitely give this small shop a chance!

Shiny Tea menu:



(Images courtesy of Winnie Wang and Ankita A. on

Winnie Wang is a junior at Barnard and the Social Media Specialist for Barnard Bite. 



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