The Birmingham Times
Herban Soul Café, owned by Alexis Kimbrough, specializing in healthy herbal tea, is set to open its first brick-and mortar location inside the Woodlawn Marketplace on Saturday, February 10.
Since 2022, Kimbrough has provided an array of herbal teas at pop-up shops and events to help aid anyone on their health and wellness journey. Its entire menu is crafted with holistic wellness in mind from herbal teas and sandwich combinations to the pastry and pizza options.
“Opening Herban Soul Café in Woodlawn is a really big deal for me,” Kimbrough told BhamNow. “I have always loved tea in general, but as I delved deeper into herbal tea, I wanted to make it my mission to open a brick-and-mortar café in Birmingham. We’re in a great location in Woodlawn, which is right off the interstate and close to the airport. Whether people are native to Birmingham or just traveling through, Herban Soul Café is a place where they can try a new, healthy type of tea.”
Herban Soul Café will be open from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Wednesday to Saturday and from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Sunday.
While doing her research Kimbrough found Birmingham did not have a “true” tea house, she said. “If you want tea, you could go to coffee shops, or grab weight loss or Boba teas (a combination of milky tea and chewy tapioca pearls) but if you like herbal tea or true tea you couldn’t get it,” Kimbrough said.
The birth of Herban Soul Café began after Kimbrough crafted a business plan and applied for Magic City Match, a grant program funded by Prosper and presented by IGNITE! Alabama, REV Birmingham, and Urban Impact Inc.
Its entire menu is crafted with holistic wellness in mind from herbal teas and sandwich combinations to the pastry and pizza options.
“One of my favorites is Immune-I-Tea. I drink it hot or chilled. It’s a great immune booster that helps with my sinuses and allergies. It’s perfect to drink daily/year-round. It has hibiscus, elderberry, mullein, lemongrass, &strawberry flavored green tea leaves,” said Kimbrough.
Born and raised in Selma, Alabama, Kimbrough, 29, witnessed the effects of poverty on friends and family who live in and around the Black Belt. She personally knows individuals who’ve battled depression, anxiety, heart disease, obesity, or a combination of them all, she said.
This inspired her to pursue a career in mental health and wellness. After graduating from the University of West Alabama, in 2016 she moved to Birmingham where she has worked as a personal trainer and in mental health as a family preservation and therapeutic foster care case manager.
In 2022, Magic City Match distributed $500,000 to help grow Black-owned businesses. It was designed to increase competency, provide access to capital, and give new market opportunities to Black business owners with brick-and-mortar locations in Birmingham.
Over 800 businesses applied to be part of the program and a committee was tasked with narrowing the sort down to 25 who would make up the cohort. Those 25 business owners competed for 13 available grants. Of those 13, Herban Soul Café would be a recipient for one.
“Not only was I the only start up business to be selected, but I was also a grant recipient. To believe in the vision without even being established when every other business [in the competition] was established, that solidified that I was doing something,” she said.
For more on Herban Soul Cafe visit website: Herbal Tea, Healthy Options – Herban Soul Cafe’ – Birmingham, Alabama
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