Judy Lu, owner of Black Sugar Caffé, wants to make sure her customers are fed, cared for and smiling when they leave.
The cafe, located on Cypress Creek Road in Cedar Park, sells coffee drinks, teas, pastries and tapas, such as tacos, sliders and pretzels. Beer and wine are offered in the evenings.
The cafe opened in September 2017 and has grown to host community events and its own karaoke and music nights. Lu said she wants Black Sugar Caffé to be a “down-to-earth” space for people to gather.
Previous to starting the cafe, she worked as a skin care industry executive. Her work brought her around the world where she tasted food from different cultures. She wanted to bring her global experiences to her neighborhood through food.
Food keeps you healthy and alive, she said, so she wants her own recipes to nourish people’s health. She uses her skin care background to include ingredients like charcoal, keto butter and oils in her coffee drinks.
She educates her baristas and employees on these ingredients so they can inform customers about health benefits.
“I want to make sure the stuff that I offer is not just froufrou drinks,” she said. “They’re actually going to be beneficial for your health.”
Lu said one of her missions is to spread humanity across Austin, she said, especially to people without food or a home. Cafe employees deliver unsold pastries and food to homeless people in downtown Austin three times each week.
“We are so busy living every day living our lives,” Lu said. “Sometimes we actually turn our heads away from homeless people or people who are less fortunate.”
Lu wants to grow her business to create a collection of cafes with people who share her mission.
“My model is that I can make a dollar, or I can not make a dollar, but I am not willing to not make a smile on the person’s face,” she said.
Black Sugar Caffé
1310 Cypress Creek Road, Ste. 100, Cedar Park
Hours: Mon.-Thurs. 6 a.m.-8 p.m., Fri. 6 a.m.-9 p.m., Sat. 7 a.m.-9 p.m., Sun. 7 a.m.-8 p.m.