Stephen Colbert Nearly Gags While Trying Bubble Tea for the First Time on Air: ‘Really Upsetting’ | Video

Stephen Colbert learned an important lesson during Tuesday night’s episode of “The Late Show”: If you’re going to eat food on the air, try it in rehearsal first.

The late-night host kicked off his opening monologue by discussing President Biden’s recent comments about Donald Trump. While exiting a bubble tea shop in Nevada, Biden responded to reporters about Trump’s debate challenge. “If I were him, I would want to debate me too,” Biden told reporters. “He’s got nothing else to do.”

“You go, Joe. That is actually the most badass you can sound while holding bubble tea,” Colbert said Tuesday night. “There’s a reason James Bond’s drink order isn’t boba, mango, shaken then poked through the lid with a comically large straw.”

To emphasize the joke, Colbert then took a sip of his own bubble tea. The camera caught several boba beads shooting into his mouth, which was a sensation that Colbert clearly wasn’t prepared to experience. After chewing a couple, the CBS host made a horrified face and ducked away from the camera as he tried not to spit the drink out.

“I’ve never had one of these before,” Colbert then told the audience, fighting back laughter. “I was not prepared for the choking hazard.”

Never one to ditch a good bit, Colbert gave the bubble tea another go later in the monologue. While riffing on Biden’s joke about his sister being brighter than he is, Colbert said, “However that happened, is there any way we can do that to you too? Can we get you on whatever pill she’s on, maybe grind them up and put them in your bubble tea?”

His second time drinking the beverage wasn’t much better than his first. Before he even grabbed it, Colbert he could be seen grimacing and he made a face when he finally took a sip.

“Really upsetting,” Colbert said, trying not to laugh. He attempted to return to his monologue but interrupted himself again to talk about the drink. “I have found that you should really have the food in rehearsal.”

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