We had the good fortune of connecting with Lariza McBean-Martinez and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Lariza, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
Starting my own business was not something I thought I would be establishing and implementing in 2021; however, I believed in my product and wanted others to experience it. The love I have for coffee was one of the drivers in creating Kulture Koffee. The traumatic car accident during the pandemic (2020); which, left me with spinal nerve damage and with mobility issues was another. These main two drives in addition to several other ones molded my thought process in the development of my brand and small business. After my car accident I was on ample pain medications, in months of physical therapy, in constant pain and had challenges walking. The pain medications were taking a toll on me and I needed to take a different approach in handling my pain management. Therefore, after some recommendations I tried CBD. I had to go through several types of CBD’s and completed extensive research until I found the right type of CBD that worked for me. Due to the fact I had a lot of time on my hand, because of the pandemic I decided to find a way to infuse CBD and Delta-8 in coffee. I was not a fan of the CBD coffee’s that had the oil residues coming up to the top of the cups. After brushing up on some chemistry, more extensive research and lots of trial and error. Voila! I created my own cannabis infused coffee, originally the coffee was just for me; however, I wanted others to enjoy its benefits and great taste. Everything else fell into place organically, I wanted to work primarily with local vendors and all my consumable products had to be organic and contain no pesticides. Once, that was achieved, the establishment of Kulture Koffee’s online platform was created for everyone to have access to its products.

Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?

Kulture Koffee is a single origin organic coffee, Cannabis infused coffee and tea company located in Houston, Texas. It launched in October of 2021 offering 4 single origin signature coffee’s, 1 Latin Blend Signature coffee and 3 different types of cannabis infused coffee’s. What sets Kulture Koffee apart from other coffee companies is the following:

  1. Our coffee is organic and kosher
    2. Our coffee is roasted per order; therefore, once you order your coffee, is when it will be roasted
    3. Our CBD, Delta-8 and other Hemp products are Nano and organic
    4. Our newly released tea lines and Boosters are all organic and infused with organic cannabis

    As the owner of Kulture Koffee, I get very excited when I hear the  awesome feedback I receive from customers in regards to how Kulture Koffee’s Cannabis infused coffee has assisted with anxiety, relaxation and pain management. Knowing that it has assisted me with the same challenges several months earlier.

    My company launched in October of 2021, and the road has not been easy. I utilized my experience to navigate through the challenges as well as my connections and partnerships in order to get to where I am at with my brand. For example, I personally endured racism from my own countrymen when I tried to inform a Panamanian group (as others have in this group) about the launch of my business. I was told that black Panamanian’s are only smart enough to work in labor and my business would ultimately fail. This comment really took a toll on me emotionally. I had a lot of pending items I did not address due to this. My network of friends really helped me get over that emotional situation and got me back on track to launching my business. The second big challenge was the confusion over the legality of Delta-8 in the State of Texas. During the hearings to understand the legality of Delta-8, I had just launched my business and spent thousands in product that I could not use due to the barring of Delta-8 by the state. The two months of litigation on Delta-8 really put a hold on my Delta-8 infused brand, which became a huge stressor for me.

    I have over 15 years of experience in the business realm, with a lot of leadership and executive level mentors. I have a creative, savvy and innovative business mind frame. It took a lot of maturing and understanding, of what my niche was, to be where I am at today. I used all the business techniques I have learned in my leadership and management roles and incorporated it into the development of my own business. Lessons that I am currently working on is understanding on how to enter into the local market, primarily local coffee shops that do not roast their own coffee. In addition, to small business marketing, which differs from corporate marketing.

    The key point I want to make to the world about my products, is that they all derived off a need. I am a strong believer that medications are not always the answer. If you find an alternative that works and is healthy, I strongly recommend that it is utilized. Kulture Koffee provides everyone with great single origin organic kosher coffee (signature coffees) and infused CBD and Delta-8 coffee’s that may possibly assist with ailments (for example: anxiety, stress, sleep assistance, PTSD, that have been supported by research throughout the US). We are also launching our Tincture Boosters (CBD, CBN, THC) and infused tea line, before summer. I want to be able to grow the options in products that Kulture Koffee offer very soon for everyone to enjoy, try and become re-occurring customers.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.

Monday – Start out at POST HTX and check out the events occurring on that day and all of the food options. Then in the afternoon head on over to discovery green and rent a bike and pedal around downtown Houston.

Tuesday – Head on over to the heights and check out the following places (MKT Market, Savoir, the Heights Walking Trail in which you can rent a bike and enjoy the scenery in the heights and Washington avenue). Then end up at Urban Social for some strong drinks and great tunes.
Wednesday – I would head to Piggys for breakfast. After breakfast I would head to MFAH for some awesome art exhibits. In the afternoon, I would head to Turkey Leg Hut for some food and end up at Bar5015 for dancing and drinks

Thursday – I would start with a long day of shopping at Cypress outlet and then end at the Galleria. Then head to 13 in midtown for dinner, drinks and lounging.

Friday – Start your morning at Thurgoods for coffee and enjoy breakfast at their outside food trucks. Then head on over to the Houston Farmers Market off Airport and 610 and finish your night at City Centre (for food, drinks and dancing)
Saturday – I would do breakfast/brunch at Leeland’s and then spend the rest of the day at Yepez Winery in Baytown

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
The development of who I am today is all because I was raised by awesome grandparents and a supportive family. My biological mother abandoned me, which left the responsibility of raising me to my paternal grandparents and my aunts. The support, positive direction, culture and love; I received from my family and my older sister has influenced and created the woman I am today. In addition, allowed this little girl that came from Panama Republic of Panama to live her version of the American Dream! The strong network of friends that I hold dear to my heart, has been an important influence to my accolades as well. To all of you, I say Thank You for being and important and crucial part of my journey in life and business.

Website: www.kulture-koffee.com

Instagram: instagram.com/kulture_koffee

Facebook: facebook.com/kulturekoffee

Image Credits
Photos – Instagram: Sweenshotsstudios

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