The Plano coffee scene is growing, and Mudleaf Coffee, located on Parker and Independence, is its newest addition.
Kat Smith, who owns and runs the shop with her husband Jordan, wants Mudleaf to be a place for community where all people feel welcomed. “Our goal is to love people well,” she says. “We never want anyone to leave sad.”
While the shop is brand new, Kat has plenty of experience in the coffee industry. Six years ago, she and Jordan wanted to provide espresso drinks at their wedding, so they found a company that provided that service, but they were not satisfied with the experience. Kat and her cousin, Katie Burton, decided they could start their own coffee catering business. A month later, they booked their first wedding and Mudleaf Coffee Catering was born.
The two enjoyed catering but always had their mind set on a coffee shop. “With catering events you see those people one time,” Kat says. “We wanted to see the same people over and over again and have relationships with people.”
Various circumstances prevented them from moving forward, though. Opening a coffee shop is no small undertaking, and both women were balancing jobs and young families as well. It started to seem like the dream would never come true until things started changing in May last year.
People from their church were talking about how they needed a place to meet and space for the community. Kat and Jordan were involved in these conversations, and soon investors, business plans and a possible location for Mudleaf popped up. In fact, their current location was the first spot they looked at in Plano. Finally, things fell into place. Now Kat and Jordan own the coffee shop, while Katie continues to own the catering, which operates as a separate business.
This community mentality influences everything at Mudleaf. They have partnered with very specific companies that they believe in and want to support. Kat says, “We wanted people to know that we’re picking things for a reason.” The coffee, the food, even the small retail items they decided to offer all have a purpose and a story behind them.
When the catering business started, Dallas coffee roaster Cultivar came alongside and provided them with coffee beans, training and equipment selection; Mudleaf has honored that partnership by exclusively serving Cultivar coffee.
In addition to serving traditional espresso drinks, Mudleaf has chocolate milk and kombucha on tap, as well as seasonal beverages like its spicy hot chocolate or latte made with real pumpkin and spices called the “Witch’s Brew.”
The majority of Mudleaf’s food offerings come from a local bakery called Mom’s Buns, offering sweet treats like cinnamon rolls and cookies and more savory breakfast options like kolaches. On weekends, they serve Tacodeli’s breakfast tacos. They do also have a few made-in-house options like seasonal cookies, sandwiches, prepackaged snack boxes and yogurt parfaits with house-made granola. They continue to experiment with new ideas as well, so the menu will have more options as they perfect other recipes.
Mudleaf also sells retail goods like jewelry, journals and headbands from High Point Supply Co., a local business that helps empower people in poverty, and the Shine Project, which helps high school students in impoverished areas learn skills and make money for a better future.
The Plano coffee shop is in its exciting early stages, but Kat looks forward to the future. Mudleaf’s interior is beautiful, and they’ve already booked wedding receptions and other private events after hours. They also rent out the private “Mudroom” for people who want to host meetings or events during daytime hours. Kat hopes they can do open-mic nights and other community focused events. For her, it all comes back to how they can best serve and love the community. While they excel at this already, there’s even more to come from Mudleaf.Mudleaf Coffee >
Visit Mudleaf from 6:30 AM-8 PM Monday through Thursday, 8 AM-9 PM on Friday and Saturday, or 8 AM-1 PM Sunday.