Ray Pea had a vision, and with Pea's Donut Heaven and Grill in Pearland, that vision has become a reality.
"We specialize in doughnuts, but we offer a real good variety of items for lunch and dinner, too," Pea said. "It took a long time to develop this concept, and after 15 years, we're still coming up with new ideas."
The response from area residents has been such that Pea, a retired Houston firefighter who owns the business with his wife, Debbie, is in the early stages of looking for room to grow.
"I think if we tripled the seating, we could triple the revenue," Pea said. "We've been at this location for five years, and we're starting to outgrow it."
As the name implies, Pea's Donut Heaven and Grill offers a variety of breakfast options, including doughnuts, kolaches and dosants—a cross between a doughnut and a croissant with cream cheese filling topped with powdered sugar and fresh fruit.
Another distinctive breakfast item—the brisket kolache—is made with brisket from Killen's Barbecue.
The restaurant also serves traditional breakfast fare, such as pancakes, breakfast tacos and plates with eggs, bacon and grits.
Pea's offers a wide array of specialty burgers, such as the Jimmy Carter, the Frito pie burger and the doughnut burger, which is made on a glazed doughnut with just the patty and cheese. Pea said all ingredients are fresh, including all the buns for burgers and sandwiches, which are baked fresh daily.
It should come as no surprise Pea runs his own doughnut shop as he first worked at his mother's doughnut shop at the age of 19.
"My mom [Josephine Pea] worked for Shipley Do-nuts for more than 15 years," he said.
Pea said his mother—whose framed photo hangs prominently in the restaurant next to the menu—died two years ago. She opened her own Shipley Do-nuts franchise in 1979.
Pea said his mother and father, Candelario, have had a significant influence on his life.
"My father had a second-grade education," Pea said. "But he went to work for Lykes Brothers Steamship Co., where he started at the bottom in the kitchen and worked his way up to chief steward. My parents were a big influence in my life."
Plenty to choose from
Owner Ray Pea has spent 15 years refining and adding to his restaurant's menu, which now offers selections for lunch and dinner. The menu at Pea's Donut Heaven and Grill offers more than just doughnuts. There is also a wide, distinctive variety of sandwiches, burgers and breakfast fare.
Downtown Philly burger: A taste of Philadelphia, this burger is topped with shaved rib eye steak, mayonnaise, bell peppers, onions and provolone cheese. ($6.25)
The Jimmy Carter: This specialty burger is topped with crunchy peanut butter, cheddar cheese and bacon. ($5.75)
The Rooster burger: This burger is served with a fried egg, bacon, lettuce, tomato, cheese and mayonnaise. ($6.75)
Pea's Donut Heaven and Grill
11601 Shadow Creek Parkway
Pearland 713- 340-3231
Hours: Mon.–Fri. 5 a.m.–4 p.m., Sat. 5 a.m.–3 p.m., Sun. 6 a.m.–3 p.m.