In the 10 years I’ve lived in Houston, Texas, the suburban neighborhood of Katy has grown so much! There are still some parts of this town with wild fields of grass and cows grazing, but anything near the major highways have definitely filled up with shopping centers and new joints to hang out. Katy has its fair share of chain restaurants, but it’s also filled with great family owned businesses. Each of these spots have something culturally spectacular to share with the world!
FIRST CUP CAFÉ
Warm, cozy, and inviting are all words to describe the atmosphere at First Cup Café. There are a mix of regular tables, bar stools, and a quaint little seating area. The space is surrounded by tall windows, which fill it with beautiful natural lighting. It’s a great place to catch up with an old friend, get some work done, or even for meetings (private space in the back.)
I’ve had my fair share of disgusting coffee, and I will vouch for FCC. Their coffee is smooth, strong, and delicious. If you’re a fan of the blended coffees, there’s options of vanilla to Nutella. A unique item they bring is their coffee protein shake – get your shake, to get awake.
I must admit I was pleasantly surprised by how moist and delicious their chicken sandwich was. I think it’d be a great option for breakfast or lunch. If you’re not feeling chicken, or want a customized option they offer Create Your Own Sandwich (CYOS.) You can pair these options with refreshing teas as well!
If you haven’t picked up yet that I love my caffeine, I’m not sure where you’ve been all my life. Well probably not reading my blog. Leafology is located in the Seven Meadows area of Katy, and is expanding to Katy Mills soon. There are computers to the right, accompanied by a wall of snacks and teas, when you walk in; and booths to the left for seating. For additional entertainment there are board games available as well.
What I enjoyed most about the drinks at Leafology was that you could taste the tea. Their teas are imported from their own tea farms, and infused with dried fruits or flowers for flavor. I am the type to typically get 30% or less of sugar, and I really enjoyed the balance of the sweetener here. I can order a drink as is, and not have to change a thing.
There’s not only Instagram worthy packaging (light bulbs, glass hexagon bottles, and drink pouches), but they also offer nitro infused tea! Nitro infused tea brings out the flavors, and adds a creaminess to it. This type of tea is dispensed straight from the tap. Guys, I think I’m hooked! You’ve got to give it a try!
This little gem is in the Falcon Landing area of Katy, and is a great spot for morning pastries, or a quick afternoon lunch. The back wall is lined with baskets of kolaches (authentic), and there’s also a show case of delicious desserts inspired by Prague. The space inside is small, but cute, and sits about 8 people. It’s run by a lovely couple (seriously mom and pop,) who are constantly inspired by the foods of Eastern Europe. The wife makes rotating soups for the Soup of the Day, and I must say their food has blown any “kolache” I’ve had out of the water.
My favorite from this spot is the sausage kolache, and country chicken sandwich. The Soup of the Day was buttery, warm, and just gave me the feels. I also got a chance to try some of their sweet kolaches, which were filled with cream cheese, and delicious fresh fruits. The fresh baked goods are made daily, and you could even snatch a great deal – 1 kolache + 1 bowl of soup for $4.20! The kids lunch special is $5.95 for half sandwich, a sweet kolache, and drink, which comes in a box perfect for on the go. Also note, they have offerings of halal items.
Located in Katy Mills mall (quickest way is through Burlington Coat Factory, or Sun & Ski Sports entrance, across from Rue 21), is this fun flavored gelato joint. There aren’t many gelato places offered on this side of town, so it’s so refreshing (literally) to have one nearby. It’s a cute little shop with seating on both sides, and ordering down the middle. There’s a beautiful showcase of flavors from coconut to tiramisu.
The gelato is creamy, smooth, and true to flavor. I must say their pistachio just made me do the happy dance! You can order your gelato in a cone or cup, or order a few flavors in a giant glass to share among a few. If you’re not quite in the mood for gelato, they also offer coffees and smoothies. The affogato is another one of my favorites, which has delicious crunchy espresso beans!
Right on the outskirts of Katy Mills circle is this Caribbean joint! The decorations are bright and beautiful colors, and when you walk in you can see the meaning of a family owned business. We got to meet some great little team members, that were just too cute for their own good. I love this type of atmosphere where you know you’re getting some real home cooking!
The family is from the Caribbeans, and while here in the states they were missing the food that was once easily accessible. That’s when they decided to open a spot to share their passion of the flavors from their home. The flavors are sweet, spicy (not all), and tangy.
Besides jerk chicken, I never really had Carribean food, so I was so delighted to try what they had to offer. The chicken is a must have here – it’s moist and flavorful. It paired really nice with yucca fries, and mashed yucca. They also offer a variety of fritters, with different sauces – the tamarind sauce was at the top of my list! In addition there are Carribean inspired street foods, and other meat with rice dishes.
I hope you can experience some of the culture coming to the local family owned businesses, and see the amazing things they have to offer! If you have any local Houston places for me to try, let me know!
Thank you to my awesome friends from @grublcubhtx for joining me on this neighborhood highlight! Make sure you guys follow them, and the spots above!