While this joint at the Eastbound platform level only has seating for around 10 people (and that’s pushing it), this tiny yet vibrant bubble tea and dessert cafe is a true hidden gem.
Owned and operated by Chaerean Kim and her brother, this spot opened in September 2015. So far it’s been a huge hit, not only because of the quality of the eats, but because of the approachability of the menu – which is pretty large considering its limited square-footage.
Unlike other bubble tea shops in Metro Vancouver and the downtown core, Bobacabana’s menu doesn’t need to be decoded, it’s not at all confusing and the straight-forwardness is greatly appreciated by those of us who are nowhere close to bubble tea connoisseurs.
Kim says this was intentional, and being a graphic designer herself, she worked to create a name, logo, and concept that was welcoming and would pull customers from all demographics who were passing through the bustling transit station.
The menu here consists of power smoothies, real fruit shakes (with flavours like Triple Mango and Cabana Colada), ice cream slush with whipped cream, and then a long list of milk and fruit bubble teas like Horchata, Coldbrew Coffee, Early Grey, and Matcha.
You wont find any powder on Bobacabana’s shelves – their beverages are freshly-brewed and made from premium loose leaf teas, homemade syrups, and real fruit – there’s nothin’ fake about these colourful creations, and you can taste it.
At Bobacabana patrons can choose to add pearls and jellies in a variety of flavours like mango, strawberry, and boba to name a few.
If you’d like you can also pick from some of the special limited-time house concoctions. This month they’ve got the Unicorn milk tea, and the Groot – an ode to everyone’s favourite Guardians of the Galaxy character.
The presentation of the eats are just as impressive as the drinks – choose from Homemade Belgian waffles in sweet (Sweet Brussels) and savoury (Savoury Brussels) varieties served like sandwiches, along with sweet liege or bubbles waffles.
Made daily just like the bubble tea, the waffles come in drool-worthy flavours like Oreo Volcano, Matcha Red Bean, Apple Pie, Pumpkin Spice, and Banana Cream Pie. Choose bubble or Belgian, then add ice cream ($1) or extra toppings ($0.50) to the already sky-high treat.
If the next-level offerings above weren’t enough to convince you to hop on the Skytrain to New West, check out this spot’s specials.
There’s $8 bubble tea and waffle lunch special (daily from noon to 3 pm), $5 “Waffle Wednesdays” for all Sweet Brussels waffles, and a Gym Special – yes – if you roll up with a gym membership you’ll get 15% off the power smoothie of your choice.
No pain, no gain, baby.
With future plans to make a menu of vegan options too (inspired by Kim’s brother), there is really something at Bobacabana for everyone with a sweet tooth to sink their pearly whites into.
Bobacabana is open Monday, Wednesday, and Sunday from 11 am to 9 pm; Tuesday and Thursday from 11 am to 10 pm; and Friday and Saturday from 11 am to 11 pm.
Address: 360-800 Carnarvan Street, New Westminster (Eastbound platform level of New Westminster Station on SkyTrain’s Expo Line)