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Honey Krush opens in Westwood, fuses organic ingredients with cultural roots

Honey Krush is pictured. The new cafe opened on Westwood Boulevard and serves organic drinks, boba and chicken. (Joseph Jimenez/Photo editor)

By Safdar Kilaru

Oct. 12, 2023 3:38 p.m.

This post was updated Oct.18 at 12:07 a.m.

Honey Krush, a cafe serving organic drinks, boba and chicken, opened on Westwood Boulevard.

The restaurant – which had its soft launch Sept. 23 – is co-owned by Brian Ko and Richard Han, both of whom created the idea for the cafe while in college.

Ko and Han said they are marketing their shop toward those looking to choose health-conscious options while still wanting to enjoy a typical boba drink. They believe their high-quality ingredients and unique mixtures make their drinks flavorful yet nourishing.

“I think there’s a huge gap there, and we’re trying to fill that gap,” said Ko. “We tried to find something that is a little more healthy in (the) boba world.”

Ko and Han said Honey Krush is different from other shops in the area because of their use of organic ingredients, the price range and their South Korean roots.

Zaynab Lughmani, a fourth-year psychobiology student, said the ingredients are one of the key advantages Honey Krush has over other competitors.

“I think that a big thing they have is that their ingredients are organic, and so it tastes really fresh,” she said.

The owners, Ko and Han, said they drew inspiration for menu items from their South Korean heritage. Their memories of food from their mothers’ kitchens in Korea are replicated in the cafe, such as with their homemade Korean BBQ sauce.

“We try to put the cultures of South Korea into some of the ingredients,” Ko said.

Prices range from $5 drinks to $13 chicken tender lunch combos. Ko and Han said that although they use organic ingredients, their drink and food prices are still lower than many other shops in Westwood.

One of their menu items is the iced black sesame misu cream cheese latte, which is a shake created by blending the flavor of the Korean powder misugaru with coffee to give it a different taste. Lughmani said the foam coffee cream cheese latte was her favorite drink.

“It was a good amount of caffeine but also tasted really good,” she said.

Honey Krush also offers milk alternatives and avoids tree nuts in all its menu items, which allows those with dietary restrictions, allergies or other preferences to consume a wide array of items from the shop.

“I like the fact that they have milk alternatives, which a lot of boba places don’t have,” said Simrah Ahmed, a fourth-year microbiology, immunology and molecular genetics student.

The owners said they pay high rent rates to maintain their business, but they added that Honey Krush is not their main income. They said that for this reason, they are able to prioritize having quality ingredients and a creative menu over making a profit.

Ko and Han said they hope the Westwood location of Honey Krush is the first of many franchises throughout Los Angeles and the United States. They added that they expect to officially launch in the next few weeks and will offer promotions to students.

“We wanted to make something that we feel comfortable drinking, we feel comfortable eating and we feel comfortable feeding to our kids,” Ko said.

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Safdar Kilaru
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