Address: 337 Bloor St. W, Toronto ON
When I attended: Sept. 5, 2014
I first heard of Chatime from my little sister who raved about the best bubbletea she has ever had during her trip to Australia. When Chatime first opened it’s first store in Toronto on Dundas St. W. (near the Toronto Eaton Centre), we frequented the bubbletea shop and spread the news to our friends.This location needed a renovation when it first opened but that did not stop the intrigued and happy customers from returning. With the recent renovations, the shop is more welcoming as a hang out spot.
Fast forward to 2014 and we got several locations across the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) and in Waterloo with long lineups as the norm.
What makes Chatime stand out?
For me, I enjoy the smooth consistency of the tea (not the grainy powdered taste from some of the tea shops) and their specialty flavours including roasted milk tea, matcha red bean milk tea and lychee black/green tea. Their bubbletea is pricier than many of their competition (my average spend is about $5 per visit) but the taste and quality had surpassed many bubbleteas I have tried before. I don’t have the funds to drink Chatime everyday but it’s definitely a treat when I crave bubbletea.
The drink tastes good because Chatime focuses on the quality of the teas. The teas are imported from Taiwan and carefully selected from their tea farm. The equipment they have ensures precise timing and temperature to brew the tea. Chatime is also the first bubbletea shop to allow for customization of the sugar levels and ice levels.
About Chatime Annex:
The Chatime Annex location took over the old “Say Cheese shop” on Bloor St., right by the St. George subway and the University of Toronto. With ample seating space, this location is going to be the HOT spot for bubbletea lovers!
At the media launch for the store, I got to meet Kenton Chan who brought Chatime to Toronto. Kenton and his business partner Thomas Wong who are the Chatime representatives in Ontario are young and passionate entrepreneurs who are knowledgeable about their teas and passionate about Chatime. They got more expansions in the pipeline so look out for more Chatime locations in Ontario. I wonder if they need a third business partner?! (*hint hint)
What we sampled:
About 15 bloggers and I got to sample a variety of teas from their signature milk teas, special mixed teas, mousse/lattes and their fresh tea leaf teas. I have never had so much bubbletea in my life! I was hyper from the drinks for the rest of the day.
Here is the list (I may have missed 1/2):
- Chatime’s most popular teas:
- Chatime pearl milk tea
- Taro milk tea with pudding. The grainy texture in taro drink is from using real taro.
- Grass jelly with roasted milk tea
- Wintermelon milk tea with mousse. I normally have wintermelon is soups but this is a treat as a tea.
- Matcha mousse
- Hazlenut chocolate milk tea
- Brown rice green milk tea
- Matcha red bean milk tea with tapioca. The chunky red beans were tasty.
- Fresh tea:
- Taiwan Alishan JinShuan
- Japanese Sakura Senchan
They were all great in their own way. Rather than getting my usual roasted milk tea, I may change things up on my next visit with my favourites of the tasting. I loved the matcha red bean and their fresh tea selections. The Japanese Sakura Sencha was fragrant with a strong tea flavour without being bitter.
As the store will officially open to the public on September 8th, 2014, we had a celebratory cake for the media launch! How cute is this cake made by Kelly’s Baked Goods?!
Check out some of Chatime’s other locations worldwide seen on their wall.
Thank you Dolly and Winson for the invitation and congratulations to Kenton and Thomas for opening another Chatime. The new location is going to kick ass!
* The drinks were complimentary but as always, the opinions in the post are my own.