I don’t know much about the actual martial art of tai chi, but I do know that Tai Chi Bubble Tea is pretty lit. There you go, that’s pretty much the entire review right there, but if you’ve got a minute, let me tell you why it’s lit.
Back in the summer of sophomore year, I found out about this little bubble tea place, right next to the Marketplace Mall, smack-dab in the middle of Henrietta. I’d only really had bubble tea once before, and I always dug the novelty of it all. There’s something deeply satisfying about drinking something and being met with a gummy texture, wrapped in a milky flavor ranging from green tea to straight-up taro, a purple starch that you can make french fries out of. Plus, there’s the fact that, in the summer, it hits the back of your throat like a cold rush.
Like many other wonderful things, tai chi was too far from campus for any of us U of R kids to enjoy, those lucky RIT bastards. Before this semester you really needed a car, or decent enough motivation to do some walking to get to the shop. Somehow though, thanks to the goodwill of God, or more realistically, the financial success of their Henrietta location, we got our own tai chi, baby.
Replacing the old, shut-down Corner Bakery Cafe’s location, the new tai chi store brings all the old along with it, and even some new. Starting off in their new location, they’ve got all their flavors of milk tea, their options for sushi burritos, and their poke bowls. I saw an ad in the shop showing off their planned introduction of ramen bowls in the place too, which is exciting. Here’s hoping they get a spicy pork bowl, because (opinionated, but totally true statement incoming) there is no better ramen flavor.
For today’s meal, I went with the winning combo of a sushi burrito and an old-school milk green tea with tapioca bubbles. The thing about tai chi is, their sushi burritos have an insane amount of variety. You can put practically anything that you’d find in a sushi roll into what is, essentially, just a bigger sushi roll. You’ve got to place your order at the register, but they’re fast at putting the thing together, so don’t worry about waiting too long for your fish burrito.
My classic combo is to go with the base sushi burrito seaweed wrap with white rice inside, salmon, imitation crab meat, cream cheese, avocado, spicy mayo, and dry seaweed flakes. This burrito is tiny, so it’s not exactly gonna be the most filling, or a bang for your buck. I personally don’t like every bit of stuff that they offer, so my sushi burrito ended up particularly smaller than most others. If you love the most insane and out-there sushi roll concepts, you’re probably going to get a lot more mileage out of your sushi burrito.
For those of you who want all the fun of a sushi burrito, but without the burrito aspect (which by the way, is where the actual fun is at, you monster), the poke bowls look pretty great. I haven’t had them myself, but I’m sure that the concept of a sushi burrito inside in a bowl without the seaweed wrap doesn’t require the knowledge pool of ten top-tier quantum research labs to solve.
If you like bubble tea, tai chi’s got you covered. They have a variety of flavors including mango, strawberry, taro, lychee, and many others. (The menu is online my dude, that’s not my job.) You can get either a small or a large, but you probably should get a large, because self-love is where it’s all at. The bubbles they use are standard, but hell, tapioca bubbles are pretty standard pretty much everywhere.
The real reason you all need to go here, though? Panda plushies, lots of em. Tai Chi has managed to nail down the cutesy East-Asian popular-food-chain aesthetic with such vigor that I can recommend going just to to unwind with friends at such an inviting, and cozy, eatery. They even have sketchbooks that people can write and draw in for other people to read through when they dine in. It’s great to see that they still maintained the cute, severely kitschy feel of the Henrietta location in their new shop. Man, I’m a sucker for that stuff. Snapchat-obsessed young people, this one’s all you.
All in all, the new Tai Chi location is a great companion to the Henrietta one, and worth going to, especially because it’s literally a walk from campus (no excuses, people). The price for a sushi burrito and milk tea is a bit high at about $15, but the close access to our school (literally, right off the Blue Line’s first stop into College Town) makes it well worth the trek. Once the warmer weather hits, you’re probably going to want to go here about once a week, and I’m sure the owners and staff will appreciate your business. Oh, and also, don’t forget to leave a doodle in the sketchbooks they have if you get the chance. I read through that stuff every time, so I’m hoping to see some love for this column in there. I love you, baby, don’t leave me hanging.