Location: 1403 Park Rd. NW
Readers’ pick: Gong Cha
For a change of pace from the typical bubble tea shops close to campus, head to the newly opened DC Boba, a tiny hole-in-the-wall shop that offers a truly diverse range of drink options.
After opening its doors in February, DC Boba is serving up a range of bubble tea drinks and toppings that customers can mix and match to find their niche favorite, or you can just get a classic milk tea with tapioca pearls ($6.25). DC Boba showcases not only the widest selection of bubble tea toppings in the District but also some of the best prices, with most drinks clocking in at about $6, a more affordable option compared to the inflated average D.C. price.
Bubble tea options include plain matcha milk tea ($6) or you can add mango popping boba for an extra $0.85 to derive a tropical pop to balance out the savory-sweet matcha. Customers can also order an Oolong Milk Tea or a Jasmine Milk Tea ($5.50) for a classic, savory drink. But most excitingly, DC Boba’s menu is complete with lychee jelly, a sweet, tangy and chewy topping for an extra $0.85 that’s hard to come by in the D.C. bubble tea shop scene.
The shop also sells a variety of smoothies like the Ube smoothie ($6.75) or the Green Tea Red Bean Smoothie ($6.25) for a thicker, cooler, drink for this summer’s warm days. You can grab a Vietnamese coffee, an iced and delicious caffeine punch that will surely prep you for the day. Sea salt coffee ($5.75) and milk coffee ($5.75) are some of my personal favorites.
Along with their bubble tea and drink options, DC Boba also sells Banh Mi, a Vietnamese sandwich and bao buns. Customers can order a Banh Mi Ham Chay with Vietnamese ham ($6.95) or for the vegetarians, the Banh Mi Tofu, filled with lemongrass tofu ($6.95).
I won’t overstate my love for a drink that D.C. boba shops often get wrong. But as someone born and raised in the Seattle area, a boba bastion of the country, my standards were high, and DC Boba meets those standards to rise above the mediocre set of options in the District.