Mo Jarin, Ph.D. student in environmental engineering, came to Atlanta from Buffalo, New York, in 2020. Amid the pandemic, finding fun things to do in a new city was tough.  

“There was nothing to do other than drive around looking for boba,” said Jarin.

Jarin developed her own boba rating system and came up with her top five boba gems in the Atlanta area. She evaluated 14 boba establishments to identify her top five favorites.

“I will preface by saying these ratings are my personal opinions, and everyone enjoys different things,” said Jarin. “There are also a million different toppings anyone can add to each drink to make it their own; it’s literally limitless, and we love that.”


“I always try to rate the places first on a classic milk tea option with low to no sugar, so I can taste the tea and whether it’s bitter, flavorful, or of quality, or if the sugar is making up for the low quality of the tea,” said Jarin.

Jarin also considered in the ambiance and cost into her ratings.  

“With inflation, boba no longer costs less than $5,” said Jarin. “My top five list is inevitably some of the most costly places.”

Jarin’s Top 5 Boba Recommendations


  1. Tan-Cha 
    Rating: 9.2 out of 10
    Cost: $$

    5677 Buford Hwy NE Suite 101
    Doraville, GA 30340

    Jarin’s Menu Recommendation:
    -Oolong milk tea with tiramisu foam (tiramisu lovers dream)
    -Uji matcha with matcha foam (matcha heaven)
    -Messy taro latte (the most genuine taro drink in the city)

  2. 4.0 Ice Cream and Drinks
    Rating: 9.1 out of 10
    Cost: $$

    6035 Peachtree Rd. Suite A201 
    Doraville, GA, 30360

    Jarin’s Menu Recommendation: 
    -Mango sago slush (forever my favorite, I will die on this hill)
    -Mochi black sesame (underrated)
    -Peach/fruity anything (they incorporate a lot of fruit chunks into the drink)
    -Great seasonal drinks here as well

  3. Tea Leaf and Creamery
    Rating: 9.0 out of 10
    Cost: $

    5091 Buford Hwy NE, #D
    Doraville, GA, 30340

    “There’s a good variety menu for classics,” said Jarin. “There’s also an excellent seasonal menu for fruit slushies, and they have ice cream and taiyaki for extra sweet cravings.”

    Jarin's Menu Recommendation:
    -Current favorite is the Handcrafted Coco Mango (sub crystal boba for normal boba)

    According to the Tea Leaf and Creamery website, a Georgia Tech location is coming soon.

  4. Tiger Sugar
    Rating 8.9 out of 10
    Cost: $

    6035 Peachtree Rd. #216
    Atlanta, GA 30360

    Jarin’s Menu Recommendation:
    -Signature with baby boba (I like mini pearls)

  5. Tea Top
    Rating: 8.5 out of 10
    Cost: $$

    6035 Peachtree Rd. Suite A-117
    Doraville GA, 30360

    Jarin’s Menu Recommendation
    -Signature green milk tea