What happens at the table
A new contender for our coffee-loving hearts and foodie indulgences has just opened in downtown Waxahachie.
After months of renovation, planning, decorating, and menu writing, White Rhino Coffee + Kitchen opened its doors to our community for a taste of coffee shop heaven.
What separates White Rhino Coffee + Kitchen from its two sister shops is the menus; it’s not only serving drinks and a place to relax, study, or meet with friends, it is also a full kitchen. They serve a selection of breakfast, brunch, lunch, and dinner plates carefully planned and created by owner Chris Parvin, executive chef at Nick & Sam’s Steakhouse Robert Clifford, and White Rhino Coffee Head Chef Alicia Womack. “I want to make people come here for a specific food… something that appeals to them individually and brings them back again and again,” Womack said. “We want to create unique items you can only get at White Rhino Coffee.” Along with being a restaurant, the space offers a conference room, indoor and outdoor stages for live entertainment, and a test kitchen to continue experimenting with recipes and menus that are comforting while modern.
When debating on where White Rhino Coffee + Kitchen would call home, Parvin considered that Waxahachie shares his team’s personal values of a community bond and with that focusing on the people, instead of solely focusing on perfecting the coffee and cuisine that they offer.
“We see Waxahachie as having enough growth to support a business like ours,” Parvin said. “We also see it as a place that is sophisticated enough to not just want a greasy spoon diner. The people here want something substantive and a community- we feel our values fit those things.”
Chris Parvin is introducing a new restaurant standard to a place that he once called home by choosing to open White Rhino Coffee + Kitchen in Waxahachie. Aside from his love of coffee shops and being a self-proclaimed foodie, Parvin also graduated from Southwestern Assemblies of God University with a business degree and is a full-time lawyer. He is a Dallas estate planning & probate lawyer and was a member of the Cedar Hill City Council where he currently lives.
You would never guess that this blue jean and cowboy boot wearing guy could have as many responsibilities and passions upon first glance. When you understand that he works with an overwhelming need to serve his community and its people by providing the best quality though, it all makes sense.
“We see Waxahachie as having enough growth to support a business like ours. We also see it as a place that is sophisticated enough to not just want a greasy spoon diner. The people here want something substantive and a community- we feel our values fit those things.”
– Chris Parvin, Owner
Where White Rhino Coffee + Kitchen now stands was once the Bonnynook Inn Bed & Breakfast and before that a family home that was built in 1865. When Parvin first started searching for a place to begin the new coffee shop and kitchen the first place he looked was on the square. After an unsuccessful search though, he decided to drive around town to see if he could find anything else. That’s when he stumbled upon the for sale sign in front of a historic house on 414 W. Main Street. Parvin immediately knew that it was the perfect place to start the next level of his business and one day draw crowds of people from Waxahachie and beyond.
Once keys were in hand, Parvin and his team made sure to keep as much of the original footprint of the house and its unique features, including the original front door, stained glass, and shiplap that remain. Upon entering guests will notice the many photographs of doors all over the walls taken by Parvin’s wife, Toni, a photographer. In the main hallway hangs a picture of the front door from the day the Parvins first saw Bonnynook Inn Bed & Breakfast that Toni took.
White Rhino Coffee’s existence depends on what happens at the table. It’s the people that sit there, and the conversations and experiences that they have. “White Rhino Coffee has always been about community and bringing neighbors together,” Parvin said. “We want White Rhino Coffee + Kitchen to be more than just a coffee shop or cute place to grab lunch now and then. That’s why we’ve invested so much time and energy into getting everything right with our place. We want to be a central part of Waxahachie and a spot where the community can grow.” The delicious beverages and decadent meals help this process of course, but it’s the relationships that form and the community that is made more whole by this project that embodies all that is most important to Parvin.