We may need to start expanding the definition of convenience store. Red-Headed Philosopher Coffee and Can I Have A Bite (the catering company run by Kathy Hale) have jointly opened in the space at 8011B Wornall Road — a low-slung brick shopping strip across from the Autozone.
“This is an opportunity for us to take the next step and have a place where people can come every day,” Red-Headed Philosopher co-owner Steven Webb says.
Webb, who runs the company with his wife Shondi, roasts his coffee in a modified barbecue grill [back in April, he sat down with The Recommended Daily to talk about how he got his start]. In the shop that opened earlier this month, RHPC is doing pour overs if you want to sit down at either the four stools inside or four chairs outside. But they’ve also got drip and cold brew to go. The cold brew is also available with a splash of chocolate milk if you want it sweeter.
The wood-paneled shop currently has an Ethiopian Yirgacheffe available, as well as a Sumatra (that Webb says is “savory and pretty complex,” as well as a “tangy,” Mexican Chiapas available as a light and medium dark roast. The cold brew is from Peru and Webb picked it for its chocolate-y character.
“It’s a place where people can come in and talk about life and be inspired,” Webb says. “We just want to spread the love.”
Webb also has organic chai – a mix of chai and milk (almond milk is also available) –that can be doctored up with chocolate milk or a shot of Toddy coffee concentrate (order the dirty chai for this). He’s got plans to add a milk frother, iced tea and affogato.
The food for the shop comes from Hale’s kitchen. She’s making scones and the two are talking about adding a few breakfast items or pizza.
The duo met while vending at the Bad Seed Farmers Market. [Both are also currently selling their goods at Nature’s Own.] Hale invited Webb to come look at the space she was leasing, believing that a small coffee bar would fit well next to the kitchen for her business.
Can I Have A Bite began two years ago as a way for Hale, a pilates instructor, to help convince her clients that they could enjoy eating more vegetables.
“My goal is to make it really easy to eat healthy real food,” Hale says. “I try to cover all diets, paleo, vegan, and real. When I say ‘real,’ I mean sustainably raised.”
It marked a return to the kitchen for Hale, who run the vegetarian café Daily Bread from 1991 to 1996. Now, Hale creates a daily menu of take-and-heat items (customers order online) with entrees, soups (which are also available at One More Cup), salads and snacks. The white board, which has shapes to correspond to dietary restrictions (an empty triangle for vegetarians for example), on a recent Wednesday listed vegan pesto pizza and chicken cheddar enchiladas. Her food is also available in the grab-and-go section of the area Natural Grocers.
“For me the fun part of cooking is the creative part,” Hale says. “The popsicles for example, just came out of nowhere.”
She holds up a set of clear pops made with organic ingredients. There’s a berry beery good with mango, the Tasteful Olive’s blueberry balsamic and a touch of orange juice and a strawberry cream with milk and chocolate. She has plans to turn Manifest Chocolate (formerly Manos) into a raw chocolate fudgesicle and use Red-Headed Philosopher’s Coffee to make a coffee pop, as well.
“This is about letting food be food. Don’t’ try and make a turkey out of tofu, that’s nonsense,” Hale says.
Red-Headed Philosopher Coffee is open from 6:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Saturday. Can I Have A Bite is open from 6:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Satur