Bay Edition - August 2021

Owner Amy Albro got the urge to bring back Soulfreak in January 2019.

BUSINESS FEATURE

Local artist Nicky Davis took half a day to paint this mural on Soulfreak Studio Cafe’s exterior.

PHOTOS BY ANDY YANEZCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

Soulfreak Studio Cafe Clear Lake Shores coee shop, art hot spot aims to be a home for all N estled near the corner where Marina Bay Drive meets Clear Lake Road sits Soulfreak Studio Cafe, a building whose bright colors and characters on its wall catch the eye and evoke a reaction, Soulfreak owner Amy Albro said. BY ANDY YANEZ

Pearland Coee Roasters has given Soulfreak its own unique blend with a special bag.

Besides oering coee, Soulfreak also: OT H E R O F F E R I N G S

After the original Soulfreak closed, Albro got the itch to revive the brand in January 2019. “Something in me said I needed to bring it back,” she said. Albro, who was looking to help the artistic friends she had made while going back to school for urban design, wanted to provide a space where they could showcase their work. The coee was an anchor to attract more people, she said. The building where Soulfreak is located had been left behind after Hurricane Harvey washed out the previous snow cone business, Albro said. When she came in, she rebuilt it by painting, installing doors and other work. One of the things Albro said she takes pride in is how Soulfreak has helped the local community. Its coee comes from Pearland Coee Roasters, and other oerings such as cake balls fromAngie’s Cake and chicken salads fromNiche Catering are all local. Some of the artwork around the shop was done by Albro, her friends and other artists. Even the mural displayed on the building’s exterior was painted by a local artist, Albro said. On most nights, Soulfreak hosts live music on the outdoor patio. “[Soulfreak is] vibrant and open to all,” Albro said. “And, with great coee.”

• sells local goods, such as craft beer and boutique wine; • sells online goods the owner, Amy Albro, personally endorses; • hosts a farmer’s market every second Saturday of the month; and • hosts open mic nights on Wednesdays and live music Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays.

The business, which rst opened in October 2019, has become a staple of the community for its empha- sis not only on creating a welcoming environment for all, but also supporting local businesses, Albro said. “It is home for everybody,” Albro said. While the hybrid coee shop, which is also part retail store and even oers boutique wine, has only been at its Clear Lake location for about two years, the Soulfreak name has been around since 2015, Albro said. It started o as Albro’s philanthropist shop in Kemah selling shirts to raise money for Costa Rican nonprot CEPIA—or Culture, Education and Psychol- ogy for Infants and Adolescents—and Rahab’s Rope, an organization that spreads awareness and aims to help victims of sex tracking. The original idea behind Soulfreak was meant to represent that underneath it all, people are all the same and equally welcome—a concept that has carried over now as a coee shop, Albro said.

Soulfreak Studio Cafe 822 Clear Lake Road, Clear Lake Shores 281-957-7987 www.soulfreak.com Hours: Sun.-Tue. 7 a.m.-8 p.m., Wed.-Sat. 7 a.m.-10 p.m.

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