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DODARO: Bubbleology offers convenient location but leaves much to be desired

Column: Sip it Up

Bubbleology's convenient location and hours are attractive to college students, while the drinks may not be the best.  – Photo by Olivia Thiel

I was drawn to Bubbleology merely for its convenient location, with it being in The Yard @ College Avenue and all, but after trying out the drinks, I think that the location is the best thing that the place has to offer. Even though Bubbleology has easy access to ordering and a pleasant atmosphere for hanging out with friends, the quality of drinks and limited options really threw me for a loop.

Since there was no need to drive, I hopped on the bus and got off at the Yard. The cafe is right next to the bus stop, and it is as convenient as it gets. Bubbleology is also connected to Art of Wings and is within close walking distance to any of the restaurants in the Yard, so there are plenty of food options to go along with your bubble tea.

Walking inside the cafe, I noticed there were ordering screens which made the ordering experience simple and efficient. After I placed the order, I got a text message notifying me of the wait time. The service was quick and I got my drinks in mere minutes.

After quickly taking the bus back to my dorm, I sat at my desk staring at my flight of drinks which included: Assam bubble milk tea, the raspberry fruit tea with lychee popping bubbles and the Bobatella special.

The drink I decided to try first was the Assam bubble milk tea since it sets my standard for every bubble tea shop. I poked in my straw and after the first gulp, I formed my opinion on the taste.

It was creamy but too bitter for my taste, which is rare since I prefer more natural bitter teas to begin with. It also had a chalky flavor and was not smooth going down. The boba was its only saving grace since it was chewy and sweet, as it should be, but overall I do not recommend this drink.

Next, I had some hope for the raspberry fruit tea with lychee popping bubbles, but once again, I was disappointed. The flavor was so artificially sweet that I could not finish the drink. The flavor reminded me of cough medicine, and the only yummy part of this drink was the lychee popping bubbles with their sweet floral notes. But even then, there is only so much artificial flavoring I can handle.

Finally, I decided to finish off the flight with the Bobatella special. This was the only drink I actually sipped from beginning to end. It was decadent with a nice bitter black tea aftertaste. The whipped cream and chocolate sprinkles accentuated the chocolate notes, and the creaminess was pleasant. The tea tasted like a hazelnut chocolate delight!

The prices were between $4 and $6, and I would say they are not justified since the quality really was inadequate. The only drink I appreciated was the Bobatella special, and I would still take any drink from Gong Cha, Utepia or the other amazing cafes in Edison to quench my thirst over this one.

Delivery is available, but with the location, I recommend just hopping on a bus and making the short trip if you are on or around the College Avenue campus. But if you are deciding to get an order delivered, I recommend ordering from elsewhere. 

One of the few bonuses attached to Bubbleology is its later hours. Many bubble tea shops close earlier, but Bubbleology is open until 10 p.m. from Tuesday to Sunday and 9 p.m. on Mondays. So if you had a bite to eat and want to grab a drink with some friends, you can always get some bubble tea later in the night.

Overall, there is a lot to say about Bubbleology. Besides the convenient location and late hours, there really is not much to compliment this place on. The drinks are mediocre, and while the service is quick, I would much rather wait an eternity at a different cafe than have artificial fruit tea served up in seconds.

The pricing is on the lower side, but no price is worth 2 out of the 3 drinks I tried, and with better bubble tea shop options, there is no point in spending money on an unenjoyable experience. I recommend steering clear of Bubbleology, but if taste is not a big factor for you, then go right ahead and check it out.

Francesca Dodaro is a School of Arts and Sciences sophomore majoring in English. Her column, "Sip it Up," runs on alternate Wednesdays.

*Columns, cartoons and letters do not necessarily reflect the views of the Targum Publishing Company or its staff.

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