There's a new kid on Melbourne's bubble tea block, but this one's no amateur. In fact, Milksha is one of Taiwan's leading bubble tea chains.
First launched back in 2004 — and now boasting over 240 outposts across Taiwan, Singapore, Japan, Hong Kong and Macau — the company has chosen Melbourne as the home of its first Aussie location.
Known as Milkshop to its Taiwanese fans, Milksha was founded by a dairy farmer and sets itself apart from competitors by using fresh milk. Fifteen years on, it's finally broughts its creamy bubble teas Down Under.
With hopes of winning a new legion of local bubble tea fans, Milksha Melbourne is serving up its signature yoghurt drinks, seasonal juices, specialty teas and milk blends. While the brand's loose leaf teas are sourced from Sri Lanka and Taiwan, the local store is teaming up with our own award-winning Saint David Dairy to handle the entire milk supply.
So, what else will you find in your Milksha drink? Well, if bubble tea is your thing, you'll want to check out the honey pearl toppings — tapioca pearls cooked in honey and flash-frozen before being shipped to Melbourne. There's also matcha from century-old Japanese brand Izumo Tousuien, fresh taro milk made with taro imported from Taiwan's famed Dajia District, Valrhona cocoa and a range of vibrant toppings such as milk pudding and herbal fairy-grass jelly
Other tea flavours include brown sugar, wintermelon, earl grey and oolong, while the yoghurt drink comes in strawberry, avocado and blueberry.
And, if the packaging of some other bubble tea joints makes your eyes water, you'll be happy to know Milksha's got the planet on its side. The store's using biodegradable bamboo straws, as well as paper bags and cup holders.
Images: Tim Harris