Brown sugar pearls and oat milk happen to be two of the biggest trends in Vancouver right now when it comes to beverages, and the two worlds collide at a new bubble tea shop in Kitsilano.
Taipei's Baroness launched earlier this fall at 2790 W Broadway, in the space previously occupied by T Mix (another bubble tea brand). Baroness began in Taiwan and has locations across Asia, however this Vancouver outpost marks the brand's first foray outside of Asia.
Baroness specializes in brown sugar pearls - this is itself a sub-set of bubble tea that emerged a couple of years ago in Taiwan and is out in full force on this side of the Pacific, with several of the many bubble tea shops operating in Metro Vancouver focusing on this preparation.
Brown sugar pearls are the result of cooking tapioca pearls in brown sugar, resulting in a rich, deep caramelized sugar flavour at the base of the beverage, which is then topped with milk. To go the extra mile, Baroness also puts a shot of brown sugar syrup in the drink with the pearls.
Baroness explains their philosophy on their (translated) website: "In order to present the baroness of the brown sugar, we blend the culture of brown sugar and bartending as our core axis to create vision. A double feast with taste."
Doubling up, indeed, on what Vancouverites love is the fact that Baroness carries locally-made Earth's Own brand oat milk for those who prefer to cut the dairy from their BBT experience.
In addition to their signature brown sugar pearls, Baroness offers milk teas, black teas, fruit and herbal teas, winter melon teas, and specialty teas - the latter including things like a Purple Yam drink and a Chestnut Milk drink. They also have seasonal offerings, like their Brown Sugar Ginger Oatmeal drink.
Baroness is located at 2790 W Broadway in Vancouver. They are open Sunday through Thursday from noon to 8 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from noon to 9 p.m.