What with Godiva’s high-profile swipe at Japan’s “obligation chocolate” Valentine’s Day custom, you might think the Japanese division of the Belgian chocolatier doesn’t care much for Japan’s local confectionary culture. That’s not entirely true, though, as Godiva has also been enthusiastic about adapting to the Japanese sweet tooth, as evidenced by its matcha green tea and sakura cherry blossom cakes that debuted last fall.
And now Godiva is proving once again that it’s keeping its finger on Japan’s sugary pulse. After years of showing little to no interest in tapioca bubble tea, recently urban Japan suddenly decided it needed to start consuming as much boba as possible, leading to gigantic tapioca drinks and even tapioca ramen, and so Godiva Japan has decided to get into the tapioca game too.
The company has expanded its Chocolixir line of frozen dessert drinks to include a new offering: the Chocolixir Tapioca Darjeeling. Before you get to the boba at the bottom, the drink greets you with a topping of airy whipped cream dusted with Darjeeling tea powder, and it looks just as luxurious and decadent as you’d expect from one of the world’s most exalted chocolate specialists.
We leaned in for a sip, and our taste buds were immediately rewarded with he flavor of rich white chocolate and sophisticated Darjeeling tea, which are mixed together to form the drink’s base. It was so good that we momentarily forgot all about the tapioca, until we sucked up a pearl from the bottom of the cup, which popped into our mouth as if to enthusiastically say “Hey, I’m here too!, you know!”
The mixture of soft whipped cream, slushy base, and chewy tapioca means there’s always an interesting and engaging team-up of textures going on. If there’s a drawback, though, it’s that the flavor of the other ingredients are so pronounced that they sort of overpower the flavor of the tapioca. However, if your boba cravings come more from how tapioca feels than how it tastes, we doubt you’ll have any problems with this ensemble cast.
The Chocolixir Tapioca Darjeeling is priced at 670 yen and will be available until the end of the year. It’s not being offered at every Godiva location in Japan, but in Tokyo the easiest-to-find participating branches are the Shinjuku Station West Exit, Sunshine City Alpa, and Tokyo Skytree Town Solamachi ones, and a complete list can be found here.
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