Yelp produced a tribute this week of readers' favorite spots for boba, the Taiwanese tapioca pearls found at the bottom of sweet drinks, writing that "nowadays bubbles can be found on every corner in the SGV." (What's known generally as boba in the West Coast is called bubble tea on the East Coast. Why? Not quite sure.) The list included San Gabriel Valley boba spots from Arcadia to San Gabriel. And it even went further reporting "contrary to popular belief, you can find boba west of the 110" and even on a boba truck. But from all those tapioca pearls, no Alhambra boba spot was mentioned.
We thought at least a few Alhambra spots should be mentioned. A few of the spots that the Alhambra Source contributors frequent (in no particular order):
In the year-and-a-half I've spent working in Alhambra and chewing on boba, I've also wondered who thought up the pearl. I dug up this Time Magazine article from 10 years ago about a new drink trend. The reporter explained "Boba, a.k.a. 'black pearl' or 'bubble' tea, originated in Taiwan nearly two decades ago and soon spread to nearby countries, including mainland China, Singapore and the Philippines. It traveled to North America via the large Asian community in Vancouver, then migrated to Chinatown areas in New York and other U.S. cities before popping up at trendy college campuses in Seattle, San Francisco and Los Angeles. Now boba is served in Southern California cafes like Boba World and Cha for Tea."
I've also learned that not all boba is created equal. We created a "Boba Map" below for Alhambra. Click on it and let us know what we're missing? What should be added?
Boba Map for Alhambra
View Boba places in Alhambra, CA in a larger map