Best Boba in Los Angeles

Best Boba in Los Angeles

When I started grad school in LA, I had high expectations for the boba quality in the city. The problem is I have EXTREMELY high standards. To me, a proper boba beverage must meet the following qualifications: 

  • the boba must be chewy but firm and definitely fresh
  • the tea has to be actual tea- not powder
  • creamers should be actual food products (NOT Coffee Mate) 
  • the tea should be steep enough to be flavorful and not oversteeped
  • I should be able to customize my beverage (i.e. Asha Tea House in Berkeley refuses to serve a combo of grass jelly and boba - even when I offered to pay for it. )

This list excludes the Starbucks or bobas (King Fu, ShareTea, etc.) 

Milk + T

Where? Downtown

Definitely a cute, minimal venue that has self-serve. The idea of consuming as much boba as you desire is a boba lover’s dream. However, the idea of a billion people touching the boba spoon is not my cup of tea (pun intended). The tea here is high quality and the drinks are well made. 

Would I come back? Only if I was in the area or if someone wanted to go.  

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Jin Tea House

Where? Pasadena

This spot is a tea house first and a boba tea spot second. They specialize in high quality Oolong and their boba was fresh and had that sugar marinated taste. I understand the premium price for the tea, but it feels like this place charges for everything. I spent $7 per beverage. I asked for real milk, which was an up-charge, and extra boba, which was a larger than normal upcharge. 

Would I go back? Only if I was trapped in Pasadena. 

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 Toastea 

Where? Downtown

I was all ready to give this place a thumbs down because I have a rule: boba places that serve super sweet snacks are never good. I was expecting sugary, icey drinks with mediocre pearls. In reality, this is a great spot. The boba was soft, the tea was good, and I could adjust he seeetness.  

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Would I go back? Yes.  

Pearl’s Finest Teas

This was another place I judged quite harshly for their empty interior. Their drinks are BOMB though. Very well made. 

Would I go back? Yes.  

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Other Places I’ve Tried:

  • Boba Truck (Northridge)- great teas, but no real milk options
  • Refresh by Ekkamai (Culver City) - the people here are so nice, but the boba is just okay.  
  • Honey Boba (Sawtelle) - They give you large cups here. I’m not a gallon of boba kind of girl, I prefer tea quality. 

For more boba fun: 

Finding food that worth the calories.