Chatime is one of the best bubble tea places around the GTA, and has hundreds of chains around the world. Unfortunately, with so many shops, there is bound to be some inconsistencies between the different locations.
I have personally tried Chatime Toronto (132 Dundas St W), Chatime Markham (20 Gibson Dr), and Chatime Richmond Hill (505 Highway 7 E). The quality at the Toronto and Richmond Hill locations are generally more consistent and for some reason always have smaller lines than the Markham locations, which can only mean either less customers or more efficient staff (or both!). A location is scheduled to open in Waterloo, which makes me infinitely giddy, and will likely smoke all competition. Generally, the drinks are all pretty good, and a regular bubble tea with tapioca will run you a little over $5.
My favourite drink by far, as the title may suggest, is their Grass Jelly Roasted Milk Tea. I recommend this drink to everyone who has ever asked, and they have all came back with positive reviews.
Roasted tea is actually made from green tea, and brings a different dimension to your normal milk tea, with a slightly sweeter and richer flavour. There aren’t many tea shops in the GTA that currently offer roasted tea, making it all the more special.
Chatime’s grass jelly is also by far the best of all the tea shops I’ve tried. Unlike the normal dense cubes you usually receive that scream they came from a can, their grass jelly is imported from Taiwan, as are all their ingredients. The jelly has a clear herbal taste without being bitter, and is so soft and silky that it nearly melts in your mouth.
The grass jelly is included in the price, and a regular runs for $4.20, while a large is $4.70.
All of Chatime’s drinks have customizable ice and sugar levels, and I like to get this drink with 30 or 50% sweetness for optimal flavour.
If it is your first time, the most dependable (and most accessible by transit) location is their downtown Toronto one, located along Dundas St W, west of Bay St.