In the wake of the growing spread of COVID-19, many cities are essentially “shutting down.” For instance, many cities across the globe have forced restaurants to only serve customers via take-out and delivery. New York City, home to my beloved university, is one such city and our Mayor, De Blasio, is currently considering a shelter in place. Other areas, such as the Bay, have already undergone such measures.
In an effort to keep our spirits up, I have consolidated a list of bubble tea shops that will continue to serve customers through takeout and delivery as many cities face the increasingly serious situation.
While my favorite drink from Gongcha is the Lychee Oolong tea with coconut jelly, especially when I have a long night ahead of studying, there is nothing like indulging in Gongcha’s classic milk tea with pearls. Especially in tough times like these, we all deserve a little pick me up!
Locations: NYC, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Texas (Houston, Dallas, Austin)
Recommendation: The OG Pearl Milk Tea
Delivery options: Seamless, UberEats, DoorDash, & Postmates.
2 Kung Fu Tea
Originally founded in 2009 by a handful of friends, KFT has become world famous! With locations in six countries, mostly in major cities, they have found phenomenal success. My friend, Molly, appreciates that they have an app, a tiered system, with rewards and new members getting a complimentary drink on their third visit. She also claims that KFT’s pearl milk tea is creamier than Gongcha’s! Maybe it’s time for a taste test...
Locations: NYC, Seattle, Portland (OR), Palo Alto, San Jose, Miami, Tampa, Melbourne
Recommendation: Matcha Milk Cap
Delivery options: Uber Eats, Grubhub, Postmates, Doordash, and in-store pickup.
3 CoCo Fresh Tea & Juice
I first came across Coco Fresh Tea and Juice while I was in Shanghai, China circa 2014. I actually did not try it then - but have since enjoyed their drinks in New York City :). As per my recommendation, my favorite is Mango Green Tea with Coconut Jelly so I encourage you guys to try it this quarantine season :).
Locations: Most large cities across the globe (Globally, CoCo has more than 3,500 locations!)
Recommendation: Mango Green Tea with Coconut Jelly
Delivery options: Postmates and in-store pick up - check for adjusted store location hours.
4 Vivi Bubble Tea
My first experience with Vivi bubble tea was on my very first Tinder date. While I do not necessarily remember that time fondly, I do remember Vivi’s bubble tea! Furthermore, as an avid fan of the popular Korean drink, Yakult, I appreciate that Vivi Bubble Tea has incorporated this milky drink into their own creations. Albeit, Yakult is not for everyone but thankfully Vivi has a plethora of other options including some options that are lactose-free.
Locations: NYC, California (SD), Washington DC, and various other cities across the US
Recommendations: Mango Yakult
Delivery options: Doordash, Seamless
While these are some spots that are still open for takeout, if it is safest to stay at home then by all means do that! If that bubble tea craving will NOT go away, feel free to make it at home. A link on how to make your own bubble tea can be found here!