Oasis Bubble Tea and Cuisine
2076 West 41st Avenue
Tel: (604) 606 0688
Scanning the drink board menu at most bubble tea places is an overwhelming experience, what with all of the flavors that are listed, including many that are not common ingredients that one usually sees elsewhere in an eating establishment and I am not talking just about bubble teas (e.g. black grass jelly, anyone?).
From the black tea-based originals, milk-based variations, and fresh fruit slush types, the choices can leave you pondering what to do. Order something you’ve had before and know you enjoy? Or take a chance with a new flavor or blend-style that might cause you to want to ditch it after one single sip? Oasis goes a step further and throws another wrench into the works with their inclusion of ice cream blended bubble teas on the menu – which for me was a new range to see in a bubble tea shop (I later saw their sandwich board outside that boldly proclaimed they have “the best ice cream bubble tea in town”).
I figured I’d take the plunge. As you may recall from my previous posts, when it comes to ice cream as a dessert, it doesn’t take much to twist my arm. At $4.25 for the base drink and an extra fifty cents for the added pearls, it came in a good sized cup complete with that ubiquitous plastic seal on top. If anyone can tell me how they put these on (is there a special sealing device they use?), I’d be happy to know.
Turns out, the ice cream bubble tea is as creamy as a milkshake, so no big surprises on the texture and temperature front. The green tea flavor was a perfect sweetness, I was afraid that is would be overwhelmingly sugary, knowing that sweetness is added to bubble teas on top of what comes out naturally from the usual ingredients (such as fruit). I was torn on the inclusion of the pearls with my drink.
Mixed in with the thicker-than-usual liquid that was the ice cream blend, I felt they got lost in the shuffle and were completely enveloped into the mix rather than standing out on their own as they are in a straight tea bubble tea. As a result, I am not sure if it was the preparation of the pearls, but they did seem to be a touch on the soft side, but thankfully with none of that chalkiness that sometimes does happen with them that I really dislike.
If you can put up with the tacky Polynesian-themed interior decor, which also stretches outside with some fake palm trees attached to the outer wall and that hover next to a circular glass cutout that serves as the main window into the restaurant (as well as some photographs of food items encased in two vertical frames just outside the front door), Oasis can almost be just that and live up to their name, on a non-busy day. With four booths lined along one wall, and some tables and chairs in the other section, if you can get a seat, it felt much less cramped than say a coffee cafe would, enabling you to sit and chat for a longer period of time comfortably.
I didn’t get much of a look at the food available, other than say some Vietnamese subs on a hanging menu board (but no doubt, better ones can be had in a place like Calgary when it comes to this as they do it well there). The skimpy menu that was on the table at the order desk also had some Taiwanese cafe dishes like beef with noodles soup, and curry with rice dishes, so I am guessing that’s why the “Vietnamese” in the restaurant name had been replaced with a blank void in the place’s signage outside. I think I’d just stick to the bubble tea and get your food elsewhere as that is what my “Spidey Sense” was telling me …