A Taiwanese chain called Tiger Sugar that specializes in beloved-by-Instagrammers brown sugar-spiked boba tea is eyeing Boston expansion, having filed incorporation paperwork on December 18, 2019, for a Tiger Sugar Allston Inc and a Tiger Sugar Cambridge Inc.
While the paperwork notes addresses of 185 Harvard Ave., Boston (Allston), and 3 JFK St., Cambridge (Harvard Square), those may be office addresses, not the actual locations for the forthcoming storefronts. Still, any address in Allston will put that planned Tiger Sugar in the middle of a flourishing boba scene, and a Harvard Square address for the Cambridge location would be unsurprising, given the neighborhood’s affinity for out-of-town chains.
A representative with Tiger Sugar confirmed to Eater that the company has Boston expansion plans but was unable to share specific addresses, timelines, or further details at this time.
The forthcoming Boston and Cambridge shops won’t be Tiger Sugar’s first forays into the United States market; it recently opened shops in New York City and Los Angeles, and there are also locations in the works in Carrollton, Texas (20 miles north of Dallas); Las Vegas; San Diego; and beyond.
A Tiger Sugar representative named K. Leung recently told Eater Los Angeles that founder Ming Tsung Yang unintentionally developed the unique (and photogenic) brown sugar variation of boba at his dessert shop in Taichung, Taiwan. Leung also explained that the Mandarin pronunciation of brown sugar sounds similar to Tiger Sugar. “Also, the brown sugar makes tiger stripes in the drink,” Leung said.
Tiger Sugar combines a proprietary brown sugar syrup with milk and slow-cooked tapioca pearls to make its signature drink. “The cooking process of our tapioca takes three hours,” Leung told Eater Los Angeles. “The larger boba is very chewy and absorbs the aroma and taste of the sugar, while the smaller boba has a smooth texture.”
Tiger Sugar opened its first shop in 2017 in Taichung, Taiwan, and has expanded quickly to include 40 locations worldwide in China, Singapore, Korea, Malaysia, Thailand, Philippines, Canada, and the United States.
Eater will update this story when new information becomes available. In the meantime, those looking for a brown sugar boba fix might visit the brand new 99 Ranch Market in Quincy. The Asian market chain is known in part for its brown sugar boba ice cream.