Kung Fu, in its purest essence, is the desire for self-improvement and to expand one’s capabilities beyond all limitations.
Here at Kung Fu Tea, we believe that it’s our mission to not only continuously improve our brand and beverages and the lives of our customers through providing only the most delicious, high-quality flavors but also to inspire the community to dream big and live fearlessly.
Founded in Queens, NY on April 30, 2010, we’re America’s largest bubble tea brand with over 350+ locations across the U.S. As one of the OGs of bubble tea, we maintain uncompromisingly high standards. Let’s be real. Making tea that looks good isn’t the hard part. The actual challenge is making tea that tastes good and presenting it in an innovative way. Made with the art of ‘3T’ Kung Fu, every cup of tea is freshly brewed at the perfect temperature using premium tea leaves. The beverages we bring to the table are strong inside-out — perfect for your taste buds and your Instagram stories.
Oh yeah, what’s our dream? To elevate the world of made-to-order beverages with a ‘Fresh – Innovative – Fearless’ approach and be present wherever you are (not in a Joe Goldberg type of way).
On April 30, 2018 (our 8th birthday), we founded National Bubble Tea Day to honor the growing community of people who live and breathe bubble tea while celebrating the beverage that has made our lives bubblier.
KUNG FU TEA IS DOING BUSINESS AS KF TEA in CANADA. PARTICIPATING LOCATIONS IN CANADA INCLUDE:
“Unrivaled quality, utmost attention to detail and unquestionable authenticity, that is the Kung Fu Tea culture.”
In 2009, entrepreneurs Michael, Allen, and Ray were walking around Flushing, Queens after returning from a trip to Taiwan. They were in search of their favorite childhood drink: bubble tea. After looking around, they found a local tea spot, ordered, and sat down to discuss new business ideas. Mid-conversation, the three of them immediately put their drinks down in confusion — the beverage was a mediocre knockoff and not the bubble tea they had come to love in Taiwan. As they observed the long line of thirsty customers, they looked at each other and that’s when Michael, Allen, and Ray discovered their new venture.
Sean was quite happy with his own bubble tea chain in Taiwan when his three friends gave him a call. They knew Sean had a knack for making an exceptional cup of bubble tea. Hours passed as Michael, Allen, and Ray attempted to get Sean on board with this new idea — though impressed by the group’s passion and proposal to share bubble tea with the rest of the world, Sean had to weigh the risks. Days passed before Sean finally gave his friends a call back, but the three of them were beyond ecstatic to hear Sean accepting the offer on the other side of the line. He was ready to join the team.
“If we wanted to be successful I couldn’t be afraid of starting again. I had to be FEARLESS!”
“We grew up drinking bubble tea, we know what AUTHENTIC flavor is.”
Discipline and patience are the core principles of Kung Fu. Taking this starting point to heart, we applied the use of ‘3T’ Kung Fu: selecting the best tea leaves, brewing the tea at the right temperature, and steeping the tea for the perfect amount of time.
We prioritized the use of actual tea leaves in our brewing process, tried various ingredients, and experimented with countless recipes until we achieved that authentic taste — the one that inspired us to introduce the brand in the first place.
It takes time, effort, and patience, but we needed these principles to attain the level of excellence that we promised from the beginning. Following the untold hours of product research and development, we opened America’s first Kung Fu Tea on April 30, 2010 in Queens, NY.
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“In order to provide superb QUALITY we needed to change how bubble tea was made. We needed to innovate, and that required a Kung Fu spirit.”
We expected the path ahead to be filled with challenges. It wasn’t easy maintaining and expanding a bubble tea business during the earlier days, let alone now when the industry has become incredibly competitive with bubble tea shops on almost every block.
Nevertheless, even when things got difficult — limited space, cash flow shortages, troublesome landlords — giving up was never an option for us. To overcome these challenges, we reminded ourselves of our mission, pushed to persevere rather than become discouraged by fear of failure, and surrounded ourselves with equally fearless individuals who shared similar passions, values, and beliefs. If anyone felt defeated, we would be there to motivate them.
Moral of the story: anyone can become a Kung Fu Master as long as they remain fearlessly dedicated in the face of challenges. With the Kung Fu spirit (and the principles that it involves), you can achieve mastery in your careers, hobbies, personal lives, and more. Keep this in mind: without the struggles, there wouldn’t be any progress.
Unsurprisingly, all our franchisees, baristas, and customers embody our ‘Fearless’ brand motto. Join us in challenging the beverage industry and challenging ourselves to be the best.
Our Kung Fu Masters are committed to developing the ideal beverage for you and providing a 5-star experience from the moment you walk in to satisfy your cravings to the moment you walk out.
Consistency in flavor, quality, and in-store experience across all Kung Fu Tea locations is extremely important to us. We also ensure that all our stores, both big and small, are fun, cozy, and welcoming. Grab a drink before class. Film a TikTok dance. Host a happy hour with coworkers. Treat your kids to drinks on a beautiful Sunday.
If you ever need to cheer yourself up with something delicious after a rough day, want to socialize with friends and family over a refreshing drink, or have fearless ideas to share, we’re here for you.
You’re a part of our community as a Kung Fu Master.
“At the end of the day, it is about people. Customers and baristas are all KUNG FU MASTERS because they believe in the Kung Fu spirit. We are a community that looks forward.”