When you learn you’re about to move, you immediately start reflecting on what you are going to miss. People, places, and things. (I think we can all agree on that!)
Well, when I moved here last year, I started lamenting on not having access to a creamy treat that I hold near and dear. A treat that I had fallen in love with when we moved to Colorado Springs: bubble tea.
Bubble tea is a Taiwanese, tea-based drink filled with chewy tapioca balls that burst in your mouth, via a thick straw. It is typically blended and has a creamy or slushy consistency. I just knew in the depths of my soul that I would not have access to it here. As excited as I was to relocate here, I had committed myself to the fact that this novelty drink was something I would either have to give up or travel a fair distance to indulge in.
Alas, Facebook rescued me, (because it has gotten so far advanced, it will alert you to things in your area that are new or you might be interested in). A friend of mine had also raved about it, but I thought it was just an ice cream parlor. I remember seeing it appear in my notifications, and I clicked on it in disbelief. I started reading about a place in Surf City, North Carolina that had all types of homemade ice cream and dippin’ dots.
Then, I saw they offered bubble tea and my jaw dropped. This couldn’t be, not in my quaint, beach town that is plenty beautiful and charming, but certainly not a bustling city where you normally find this treat. I planned my first visit for the upcoming Saturday!
Of course we are in the midst of Covid-19, so when we arrived to the charming storefront in the Surf City plaza, we had to call in our order. I took my time perusing the menu in excitement, as I always do when I try a new place. Thats when Ericka Foskey entered my life. Out of the entrance, she came, with her spouse and two children, and my heart was instantly warmed. A family-run, specialty ice cream and bubble tea shop. How extraordinarily precious. With big smiles on their faces, they delivered us our orders while we sat eagerly in our van, and introduced themselves.
Every item we ordered was delectable, and I think you will enjoy them too!
Here is a list of all the items I’ve had so far:
butter rum bubble tea with black,
irish cream bubble tea;
tiki turtle (kahlua) ice cream;
banana pudding ice cream milk shake (this tasted JUST like a fresh batch of banana pudding!)
Ericka and her husband, Finell, reside in Onslow County with their two, college-age children: Jailon (19), and Jordyn (17). Jordyn is in the early college program. Finell is from Jones County and Ericka is a military brat like myself, who is from all over, though she was born in Seoul, Korea. A disabled veteran from 82nd Airborne out of Fort Bragg, she moved here in 2013 to find solace and peace in this beach paradise, after being diagnosed with leukemia from exposure to depleted uranium in Bosnia. She is the definition of a hero and I encourage you to go and try their wonderful ice cream creations and meet her family!
What they are doing here is very unique and every visit you make here will be different. Don’t expect to walk in here and find plain chocolate and vanilla.
Just last week, they introduced my favorite flavor which is matcha bubble tea. Matcha is finely ground powder of specially grown and processed green tea leaves, and it has an earthy and creamy bite. The Foskey’s are committed to coming up with new and innovative drink and ice cream creations.
The second time I visited her, she talked to me in detail about how they work with a collaborator on implementing new items, like the mint and chocolate bark; heavens to cheesecake; great bakery, and adult paradise! She even let me sample a maple flavor she had with no added sugar and it was superb.
An ordinary ice cream shop it is not, it is a novelty one for sure. This Tiki Turtle is coming out of its shell! Let us know if you’ve been here, when you visit, and what your favorite flavors are!
Tiki also has weekly events where they feature different treats. You can find these on their Facebook page. This Friday, May 29th, they are having “Freaky Fruity Friday” from 12-6, where the fruit flavored milkshakes are the star of the show.
The current flavors are: peach, wild berry, banana, mango, apple, orange, tangerine, lychee, raspberry, and strawberry!
Guess what? You can have it topped with homemade whipped cream!
Forks Up, Food Down,