Some Central Louisiana residents may already be familiar with Khmericano, but for others, it’s a taste of something new.
Khmericano Coffee has operated out of a mobile location for the last couple years, but now a more permanent location has opened in Pineville.
Bibi Leang started his coffee journey in Cambodia.
“A coffee roaster was looking for employees, for salesmen, and right there I had no clue about the coffee,” said Bibi Leang. “They said they were looking for coffee salesmen and I was there just to get a paycheck, period… and that was the first time I experienced a real espresso and things like that. I got hooked from that day and learned about the real coffee.”
Leang’s coffee story began in Cambodia, but so did his love story with his spouse Kristen.
“His mom was real persistent and she said, well, fine, I’m just going to invite her over for dinner,” said Kristen Leang. “And so, she invited me over for dinner. And of the 20 people there, I was the only one that did not know it was a setup. And he didn’t talk to me the whole night. But, a week later he asked me on our first date, and we have been together ever since.”
Khmericano Coffee’s unique origin is just as unique as its name. A mashup of Khmer heritage and the popular “Americano” drink, the Leang’s needed a special logo that could visualize their entire story.
“Bibi’s brother is a graphic designer, and he designed it for us in Cambodia, and he obviously made it look like a cup of coffee,” said Kristen Leang. “He made it, the ‘kâ,’ look like a cup of coffee. And he made the latte art on the ‘kâ’ look like a fish to represent just not only our passion for coffee and our Khmer heritage, but also our love for Jesus.”
The Leangs have a special journey that is only matched by some of their signature menu items.
If you’re going to go out on a limb and be adventurous, I would say you have to try our Arnoldspresso Palmarade for the summer,” said Kristen Leang. “It’s a seasonal drink. It’s our spin on an Arnold Palmer. It’s our hand pressed lemonade with a homemade simple syrup and a shot of espresso. So instead of tea and lemonade, it’s espresso and lemonade. And it’s, I mean it’s tangy, it’s sweet, it’s a little bitter from the coffee. You just get all those flavors and at first your brain just kind of doesn’t know what to do with it. But I’ll tell you, by the fourth sip you’ll be addicted.”
Khmericano Coffee is brewing up something special, a unique flavor and environment that anyone can savor.
Khmericano Coffee is located at 3919 Suite A on Highway 28 East in Pineville. They are open Tuesday through Saturday. Tuesday hours are 6 a.m. to noon, then they will take their coffee truck to the Alexandria Farmer’s Market for business from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. Wednesday through Friday hours are 6 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday they are open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
For more information on Khmericano Coffee keep up with their Facebook page.