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NEW BIZ: Karma Boba crafts bubble tea with American twist

Karma Boba store supervisor Tessa Wessling

Karma Boba store supervisor Tessa Wessling prepares an order of The Beast, the business' top-selling drink. The bubble tea shop is now open at 407 U.S. in Marble Falls. Staff photo by Nathan Bush

Karma Boba has a “user-friendly” approach to crafting bubble tea, a traditional Taiwanese drink. The takeout-only shop at 407 U.S. 281 in Marble Falls opened May 24.

On the six-selection menu devised by owner Devin Williams are top sellers The Beast, with a wild berry sauce, and The Campfire, with a rich chocolate flavor and a smoky marshmallow foam. All contain tapioca balls, or boba, which burst with flavor and texture when eating. 

Originating from Taiwan in the early 1980s, the cold drink has recently become a hot trend in the United States.

Williams said the shop plans to regularly change its selection.

“Nothing on (the menu) is set in stone,” he said. “It’s all based on the opinions of our customers.”

After moving to Horseshoe Bay from California in 2022, Williams studied the area before making his new business decision.

“I conducted a demographic analysis, and I decided boba was the best thing to bring here because it was something people really like and it was a need that the community would definitely benefit from,” he said.

Rather than keeping to traditional boba tea recipes, Williams added an American touch to his offerings.

“I decided to make it more like an old-school milkshake shack style,” he said. “I wanted it to have a more classic concept and feel to people.” 

The result is “a more user-friendly boba experience,” he said. 

Williams hopes the amount of research he put in before opening Karma Boba pays off.

“I must have tried 100 boba shops in the span of a couple of months,” he said. “I just wanted everything to be as perfect for my guests as possible, so I did everything with them in mind. I want to make sure their experiences are top-notch.”

Karma Boba is open from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Wednesday-Sunday. It only accepts card payment and takeout orders. Visit its Facebook page for more information.