I heard about the Chatime Innovation Bar fairly late in the game, but when I saw that they opened one inside of Yorkdale, I made sure that I stopped by. I was interested in the concept that only a handful of stores will carry these drinks, and I think I’m lucky there’s one close by because I know that if I had to travel all the way downtown to get it, I probably won’t go. With that in mind, I also kind of dreaded the prices, because I remember seeing that they were slightly pricier than a “standard” regular size bubble tea.
Prior to going to the Innovation Bar, I looked up their menu online so I could figure out what I should get so I wouldn’t hog up the line or something. They had really interesting and Instagram-worthy drinks, but question was, is it good for the price you’re paying?
The first drink I bought from the Innovation Bar was the Earl Grey Milk Tea w/Tapioca. I don’t typically get tapioca with my drinks because of the long standing lesson from my mom, but on some occasions I do end up getting some. The drink, if I remember correctly, was about $7-$8 CAD so it wasn’t cheap, but I did get the large size cup. The drink was said to have a floral/citrus-y taste, and I did get that but I mostly got a taste of milk-tea from that drink. The grey colour of the drink itself was pretty neat though, I wouldn’t say it’s at a good price to constantly get this drink but it’s worth it to try!
The second drink I had was a Lavender Milk Tea (I think it was?) with tapioca. I don’t know if I’m choosing the more tame drinks or if I’m picky but this was like 40% floral flavour and 60% milk tea flavour. It was a normal milk tea colour and I also got tapioca with this drink. Like the Earl Grey milk tea, I’d say this drink is great to try but a little pricey to constantly buy.
The final drink I bought from the Innovation Bar to try was one of their glittery bottled drinks, but I got the Purple Reign flavour. It was so pretty, omg! Every time you moved the bottle, the edible glitter inside of the drink would reflect off the light and gave this awesome magic potion vibe. The drink also had this layer of orange liquid/syrup on the bottom and you were supposed to shake well before drinking it.
For me, I brought it home to share with my mom because she loves Lychee so it sat in the fridge for 3 hours. There were pieces of…fruit or maybe cherry blossom petals at the bottom and honestly I can’t say if it’s edible but we both took a few before the ultimately strained them out. So I hope they were fruit pieces LOL. Anyways the bottled drink was $8 CAD which is on the pricier side for drink, but then again, you are getting a “free” glass bottle so… I’m not sure if the glass bottle was intended to be reusable but I’ve been using it since then to carry drinks to school.
Overall, I love the concept and I look forward to whatever new drinks are put out by the Innovation Bar. I probably wouldn’t get any repeats, but I will get any interesting new drinks that they reveal.