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Blue Ribbon Winner: Kam's Bubble Tea & Sushi had no violations for more than a year

Posted at 5:30 PM, Jun 11, 2018
and last updated 2018-06-11 18:06:05-04

SARASOTA, Fla. — "I love this place and I probably come once every couple weeks but more if I can," explained Julie Nguyen, who enjoys the food at Kam's Bubble Tea & Sushi on Fruitville Road, especially the smoothies.

"They have a really good variety of tropical fruits that are fresh and they make them into these things, and they put Boba in it," Julie said as she lifted up her smoothie.

BLUE RIBBON WINNER: Edy's Ice Cream in Sarasota had perfect inspections for 3+ years

"So Boba Tea is like the gummy bear. It's sweet and chewy," says Novan Makapedua, who owns and runs the Sarasota restaurant along with his family.

They're known for fresh Boba, a healthy starch grown in Taiwan and cooked fresh every morning.

"So you're going to throw this away?" ABC Action News anchor Wendy Ryan asked Novan, pointing at the large bucket of Boba.

"Yes. Every day we make it so everything is fresh daily," he explained. 

Novan's in-laws started the restaurant, naming it after his father-in-law Kam. They work the most hours by far.  

"It's easy to make sushi," Kam said.

"Happy to serve customers," Kam's wife replied with a smile.

And Novan says their success is also getting excellent inspections.

Cleaning daily, no cross contamination and keeping detailed records to make sure the raw fish is fresh all go towards good inspection scores.

"I noticed everything is sealed," Ryan said.

"It is. And we have the salmon and always put the date so we know when we cut it and then when we need to use it by," Novan said as he showed Ryan the label on the outside container of the salmon.

All that hard work hasn't produced a single violation in over a year.

And after long shifts seven days a week, they're finally getting some time off. 

"Starting like two weeks ago, we are blessed enough so we can open six days a week," Novan explained. 

"So one day off?" Ryan asked.

"One day off, finally for them," he said. 

And since they're famous for the 'Bubba Tea smoothies, Ryan just had to taste one for herself.

"Here we go. Mmmm delicious! That is good," Ryan said after taking a sip. 

"On behalf of ABC Action News, we'd like to give Kam's Bubble Tea and Sushi our ABC Action News Blue Ribbon Award for perfect inspections for more than a year. Congratulations to all of you," Ryan said as she handed them the award.

"Thank you so much," Novan said as his parents reacted with huge smiles.