Ride the Lightbulb Boba Wave

Drinking boba tea from a lightbulb-shaped bottle is trending on two continents—Asia and North America—and on Instagram. The trend began in South Korea and Taiwan before crossing the Pacific Ocean to make an impression on Americans. Now Californians, New Yorkers and Texans are drinking the well-liked milk tea with chewy tapioca balls from a lightbulb bottle, too. And the trend is sure to spread.

It all began in 2016, when the Hyundai Department Store in Seoul, South Korea, started serving tea-based sodas in lightbulbs, according to TimeOut Austin. Concurrently, a boba shop in Taiwan proudly posted Instagram photos of its own boba teas being served in lightbulb bottles.

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Now, drinking boba tea from a lightbulb bottle is so popular among Americans that Square Bar Cafe’s new San Jose, California, location cannot stock its lightbulb-shaped bottles fast enough to keep up with demand, reports sanjose.com. The store orders a case of lightbulb bottles per week and always comes up short.

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Austin, Texas’s Mango8  dessert shop began serving the drink in July, and the resulting Instagram posts were a testament to the unique beverage’s popularity. Mango8 charges customers an additional $1.25 to have boba tea served in a plastic lightbulb, which they get to keep.

The lightbulb boba tea’s presentation makes for an eye-catching visual for Instagram. In addition to its silly teardrop shape, the beverage can be a variety of colors, including pink, blue, green and yellow. Searching the hashtags #lightbulbdrink, #lightbulbboba and #lightbulbtea bring up numerous images of people enjoying their lightbulb boba teas.

Retailers who want to be on the cutting edge of this trend can find hundreds of recipes on Pinterest by searching “bubble tea.” Lightbulb bottles are available in glass and plastic and can be ordered from carryoutsupplies.com and dhgate.com.