Once the ordinary ambiance and neutral color schemes of big chain coffee shops no longer seem welcoming and fun, make a short trip over to Kemah and check out one of the most colorful and unique coffee shops in Houston’s Bay Area. This flower shop turned coffee shop and art gallery is a scene straight out of Alice In Wonderland.
In the heart of Kemah, right down the road from the boardwalk, wooden buildings and colorfully painted homes have been converted into gift shops, little restaurants, palapa bars and more. Nestled in the middle of these businesses is Art of Coffee.
Appropriately named, this coffee shop is also an art gallery for local artists. Paintings of lighthouses and sea animals and watercolors of pineapples and flowers cover the walls leading to the back of the small café. The artists’ names are displayed and all of the artwork is for sale. Comfortable leather couches and various stools and seating line the walls and back area leading to the outside courtyard.
The idea to open a coffee shop and art gallery came about while owners Bill Minak and Jimmy Sims were passing out hot coffee in their flower shop next door. Guests would drink their coffee while browsing the artwork or picking up flower arrangements. The flower shop, Kemah Flowers, still occupies the space next to the coffee shop.
The coffee served at Art of Coffee is from Geva, a local brewery in Houston. Geva is the maker of San Marco coffee, which has been nicknamed “crack” due to its high amount of caffeine. Local Kemah company, Teazsol, provides the drink shop with fresh tea as well as fruit smoothies. Colorful, mismatched mugs and teacups are displayed throughout, giving the shop a warm, welcoming feel.
Kraftsmen Baking in the Heights provides the shop with baked goods such as lemon bars, muffins, granola, brownies and more. Homemade cake is also sold. There are new varieties each week. Popular varieties are the lemon poppy seed and pumpkin chocolate muffins.
Every day of the week Art of Coffee sells Granny's chicken salad sandwiches loaded with seasoned and shredded, oven-baked chicken breasts mixed with mayonnaise, dried fruit, celery and grapes, served on a toasted croissant. Accompanied by a side of fresh fruit, this is the only food item on the daily menu other than pastries and cakes.
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On weekends, Art of Coffee sells Bill's Breakfast sandwiches from 8 a.m. to noon. A local lady, only referred to as Mrs. Penny, comes in on the weekends just to prepare this local favorite. Guests can choose from a croissant or a bagel, sausage or bacon and American or cream cheese.
Art of Coffee is open Monday and Tuesday 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., Wednesday through Saturday 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.