Koreans ferment best

Rice tea, Pearls

Illustration by HOLLY GERHARD

Pearls is a small, adorable and independent boba shop, with an emphasis on quality, loose-leaf teas. With that in mind, the menu is much shorter and simpler than your standard boba tea spot, but there is one unusual offering: sikhye ($4), a Korean rice tea. Cooked rice, spices and water ferment for 24 hours, resulting in a sweet, mild tea with light toasty, malty notes. On the bottom of your cup, a slurry of rice sits—potentially mingling with boba for 50 cents extra—and awaits your active slurping. It’s a fun, refreshing drink on a hot day. 2264 Fair Oaks Boulevard, www.pearlsboba.com.