Gong Cha is a massive Taiwanese milk-tea chain with more than 300 locations throughout Asia (Taiwan, Singapore, Hong Kong, China, Malaysia, Indonesia, Korea, Philippines, Macau, Thailand) and Australia. The first U.S. Gong Cha opened in Fremont in 2013, and two came in 2014 in San Jose. The space at 439 Waverley St. (between University and Lytton Avenue) is currently under construction; company representative Steve Imai said that they're hoping to be open by the end of January.
Gong Cha serves up brewed teas and a range of milk teas from oolong to Earl Grey to coffee to brown sugar. Toppings include milk foam, tapioca pearls, coconut jelly, basil seed, herbal jelly and pudding. There's also "milk foam" teas (the "mustache series") that are topped with a layer of foam. Like most milk-tea spots, customers can adjust the amount of ice and sugar levels to their preferences.
All teas are brewed fresh every four hours, according to the Gong Cha website.
Check out the menu and the Fremont location's Yelp to get an idea of all of their offerings.
Gong Cha was founded in Kaoshiung, Taiwan, in 2006, according to the company website. The term "gong cha" references an act of offering "supreme quality teas" as a tribute to the emperor in ancient China.
"With the same philosophy in mind, Gong Cha thrives to provide the excellent quality tea and beverages to its customers," the website reads.
P.S.: Thanks to astute reader Khoi Huynh who reminded us that before Loving Hut, which T4 replaced at165 University Ave., there was a milk-tea shop, as well as Q-Cup down the street. Loving Hut, a vegan restaurant, also served milk tea. Downtown seems to be seeing a mini milk-tea resurgence since the era of these places.