Handmade Deliciousness for All
Anissa Williams has dedicated her entire professional career to the food and beverage industry, starting at Starbucks to pay her way through college.
Then Peet’s Coffee recruited her away from the competition, where they put her imagination to work developing beverage innovation and licensing. Her final job before going to work for herself was as a VP for a high-end restaurant group with international locations. With all of that experience under her belt, Anissa knew it was time to take the plunge. “I have always wanted my own fast casual restaurant so I explored several ideas,” said Anissa.
As someone who suffers from epilepsy and follows a sugar, gluten, and carb-free diet, Anissa was tired of eating salads and bun-less burgers when she went out to eat. “I just wanted delicious food like everyone else was eating!” said Anissa. So, after some creative thinking, Anissa developed the idea and launched Wanna Waffle?. “With my waffles, I could make anything I loved and just put it on a waffle! I always try to keep in mind allergies, food lifestyles, and various intolerances.” After offering her creations at some pop-ups and small catering events during Summer 2020, Anissa saw the demand for her type of food and decided to take the leap to purchasing a food truck that August.
Wanna Waffle? is not your typical waffle restaurant. While they do offer one called The Plain Jane (whipped cinnamon honey butter and syrup), most of Anissa’s waffles have what some might consider outrageous combinations. “The first waffle I ever created is called The Kicked Up Avo, which has avocado smash, blue cheese, spicy honey, and red pepper flakes,” said Anissa. “We also have a few different options of chicken and waffles which are probably our most popular menu items.”
As Wanna Waffle? began to gain popularity, Anissa knew it was her opportunity to look for a brick-and-mortar location. “I feel very lucky that I met John Krause, the owner of Big House Beans, several years ago,” said Anissa. “We had mutual connections in the coffee industry and have stayed in touch throughout the years.” When John found out that Anissa was searching for a storefront space, he reached out to her about the Library Café. “The library is a special place for me, as I have been lobbying to get a library in Oakley.”
Wanna Waffle? officially opened in the downtown Library Café on August 14, 2021, offering a variety of beverages, sweets, and of course, waffle creations of all kinds. “I want my location to be a place where everyone can eat together while still being safe,” said Anissa. As for the future of Wanna Waffle?, Anissa has big plans for her company. “I always envisioned that we would have several locations, including branching into other states.” She already has licensing opportunities in Pleasant Hill and even Florida, but Brentwood will always be home. “My focus will always be on serving the community of Brentwood. I am so grateful for the opportunity they have given me!”
Business: Wanna Waffle?
Address: 104 Oak Street, Brentwood, CA 94513
Tel: (925) 915 0295
Photos by: Ron Essex Photography