Monday, March 14, 2011

Coffee Bubble Tea At Ichiban Cafe in Columbia

Sometimes you need a cute trendy drink to cool you down.  Some times you need caffeine.

Now, you can have both at Ichiban Cafe.

Ichiban serves up bubble tea along with a broad menu of Japanese food and sushi.  Mrs. HowChow tested the place last year with a jasmine bubble tea, but we went back with a need for refreshment -- and a mid-shopping trip pick-me-up.

Bubble tea -- or boba tea -- is basically a soft drink with tapioca pearls.  Places like Ichiban and  La Boulangarie or Bon Appetit Bakery in Ellicott City serve varieties often flavored with fruit and tea.  You get an oversized straw so that you can suck up the iced tea and the soft, chewy pearls.

At Ichiban, I got a coffee bubble tea.  Real coffee iced down, then tricked out into a Taiwanese treat.  Good flavor, fun with the tapioca, just enough caffeine to get me through the end of our errands.  If I remember right, they had a mocha version as well.  That's an alternative to a soda if you're doing errands in the summer heat around Dobbin Road.

Ichiban Cafe 
6250 Columbia Crossing Circle 
Columbia, MD 21045 

NEAR: Ichiban is in the Columbia Crossing shopping center with Target. This is off Rte 175 at Dobbin Road. It is near the Joseph A. Banks and across from the Dick's sporting goods.


perrik said...

Coffee bubble tea? Shouldn't it be called bubble coffee? Whatever the heck it's called, I've got to try it.

On my last visit, during prime weekday lunch time, Ichiban Cafe was completely slammed with carryout orders. It took a long time for my "for here" lunch to come out, but I wasn't in any hurry and didn't mind. Glad to see them busy - the food isn't brilliant, but it's good and hey, bubble tea!

Kimi said...

The best bubble tea that I've had in Howard County so far was at Chopstixx in Elkridge off Rte 1 in the SuperFresh shopping center! Perfect bubbles and great tea.

Anonymous said...

Can't wait to try - love the bubble teas, and now it looks like there are a few options to try in the neighborhood. Thanks!

Penny said...

I work in Bowie, across from a restaurant called Ichiban Sushi. Are these related? If so, the Bowie location has a few items not listed on the menu. Among them is the delicious Ichiban salad -- crab, seaweed, crunchy roe, among other ingredients.

Anonymous said...

Went to the Columbia Ichiban last night on a whim after fro yo at Tutti Frutti. The service was pretty bad-- the hubby and I just wanted an $8 a la carte shrimp sushi roll. Our waitress, who was probably also the owner, said, "and then..?" after we ordered, as though that wasn't enough. We got the food quick and it was pretty and tasty, but after we got the check, when they charged the card and had the area to add tip, they had added about $0.75 to our check. It was pretty weird... turns out that they have a $10 credit card minimum, which is high and not allowed by the credit card companies. The chef came out and gave us weird looks as he and the cashier/waitress/owner had a conversation in their native language. The place was not at all crowded. We just reduced out tip in the amount that they had raised out bill, but it was pretty weird. The shrimp roll was very tasty, so we'll be back, probably for lunch when they're likely more crowded and less worried about gossiping.