Kevin Wilson: Brewing Stories and Chai, a Tale of Culture, Connection, and Comfort

Kevin Wilson: Brewing Stories and Chai, a Tale of Culture, Connection, and Comfort
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Photo Credit: crossculturekev

Sipping the aromatic blend of a chai is not just an act of consuming a hot beverage, it’s an experience that transports a person closer to their roots. That’s exactly the sentiment Kevin Wilson – CEO of Chai, echoes through every cup he brews and every story he shares.

Dubbed as the “CEO of Chai” by Bon Appétit magazine, Kevin Wilson, hailing from Sri Lanka, makes a profound connection between chai and culture. Wilson found himself separated from his family and homeland, stepping onto American grounds alone. Yet, embedded in the heart of his upbringing was a rich tradition of chai. This cultural legacy became a source of solace, easing the solitude by reminiscently wrapping him with the comfort of home.

Endowed with the wisdom of three and a half languages and firsthand experiences from 13 countries, Kevin, currently a youth pastor in Oceanside, California, weaves eclectic narratives to guide the young minds under him. His role has always been not just about spanning religious faith but fostering a thoughtful approach to life itself.

Authored a book “The Way of Chai,” Kevin infuses history, South Asian culture, and lessons on meaningful living. A cherry on top, each chapter is cleverly complemented by a chai recipe, simplifying intense concepts and constructs with the simplicity of brewing a cup of chai.

Through the virtual world, Wilson escalated a seeming cultural thing into a global sensation. He became the CrossCulturalChristian or the CEO of Chai, his inviting, and entertaining videos on chai-making recipes garnering him an immense following. Chai for Kevin is not just a mere beverage, but an indelible part of his life and identity, something that resonates through his videos as he links the different chai variants to distinct cultures.

Kevin Wilson’s chai ideologies are simple yet powerful. Never redundant, gravitating from commercialization, and always authentic – these are the core principles of his world-renowned chai-making tutorials on TikTok. With a home to over 407,500 followers, Wilson’s love for chai did not solely become a success story overnight. 

Having spent a significant part of his life in the Middle East, coming to the United States at 18, making chai turned into more than just serving content; it became his bridge to his roots. For Wilson, making daily tea turns into a micro-sabbath, a time to reflect, take inventory of life, and connect with God.

Wilson’s journey to TikTok began as an exploration, moving from Instagram to TikTok, viewing the leanings of his students. His chai tutorial galvanized a surge of followers, views, and likes, which astounded him and inspired him to share more chai-related content.

Most of Kevin’s videos incorpporate humor, wit, and just the right amount of sarcasm. They host an undercurrent of serious themes, discussing the coils of anxiety, racism, and pandemic-induced stagnancy with his unique perspective. His audience’s responses have been heartwarmingly positive, relating their own experiences and expressing gratification.

However, criticism always lurks within accolades. Kevin, who identifies himself as a third-culture kid, has often found himself thrown in the arena of cultural representation. Despite occasional doubts and criticisms, Kevin seeks solace in the innate purpose behind his public storytelling: an act of love.

With every brewed cup and shared narrative, Wilson is not just creating viral content; he’s using chai as a canvas to showcase family, community, slowing down, nostalgia, being present, attentive, and promoting relationships and friendships. For him, content creation is all about creating space for meaningful expression.

Follow Kevin’s aromatic chai journey on Instagram and TikTok: crossculturekev. His approach to chai is not about achieving chai-influencer fame; it is about fostering a community where each concocted cup of chai carries a personal story; it’s an act of love and space where people feel seen, valued, and understood. 


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