The Grand Tea & Imports Family
As a multi-generational family business, Grand Tea & Imports is Mr. and Mrs. Liu’s labor of love and the backdrop of their daughters’ childhood upbringing. Every member of the family is integral to the shop’s operations and evolution.
Mr. Liu (Teafucius)
Chinese Tea Enthusiast & Business Founder
Since launching the business over a decade ago, Mr. Liu or “Teafucius” has collaborated with prominent academics and thought leaders from China’s tea industry to promote tea culture and change consumption habits in the United States.
In 2009, he organized a tea summit that brought together academics from Yunnan, China and prominent US-China relations lobbyist, Anna Chan Chennault. In 2016, he was also awarded the Bronze medal for his tea ceremony performance at the 2016 Guangdong Professional Tea Master Competition.
He is our business’ jack-of-all-trades: crafting new designs for our shop displays, organizing basement inventories, and writing new thoughts on tea and Buddhism. When he is not thinking about the business or sharing new teas with friends, he could be found meditating, a practice that he adheres to every day.
Chinatown Aunty & Shopkeeper
Mrs. Liu is our family business’s high-energy shopkeeper and go-to ancestor and Buddhist worship goods expert. Her infectious warmth and expert wisdom over the years has turned many first-time customers into long-time friends. She is usually seen attending to customers who travel from far distances to stock up on spiritual goods. Many of these customers insist on getting Mrs. Liu’s advice on important Chinese celebrations and spiritual proceedings.
Sourcing Strategist & Business Manager
Based in Hong Kong, Karen often travels into China to work directly with farmers, artisans, and suppliers in order to identify unique cultural goods and teas to bring back to the family shop. Although remote from Chinatown, she works closely with her parents and sister to develop the shop’s long term strategy across marketing and digital efforts.
When she is not managing the family business, she enjoys practicing yoga and working with Hong Kong’s migrant worker community to promote education opportunities.
Business Manager &
Small Business Advocate
Alice is the youngest member of the family and grew up working in the Chinatown family business. Alice is passionate about helping small business owners like her parents’ prosper and maintain their foothold in the community.
In her free time, she helps deliver shrines, coordinate customs and logistics for our imported goods, and organize community events showcasing the shop’s various teas and goods.
Sourcing Strategist & Wet Market Vendor
Uncle Zan is based at our ancestral home in Taishan, Guangdong. He is our China sourcing strategist skilled in identifying fragrant incenses, joss paper, and religious ceramic goods. His contacts with local farmers allow us to source wild grown teas from the area’s lush, misty mountains.
Uncle Zan is also the owner of a beloved noodle and baked goods stall at the Taishan Wet Markets. Although he can whip up a range of Cantonese favorites, his specialties are fried peanut candies for Chinese New Years and ‘zongzi’ (bamboo wrapped rice dumplings) for the Dragon Boat Festival.