Angelica Mazé is a Waco transplant by way of San Francisco, New York, and Saudi Arabia. A former chocolatière and production manager, she is now a writer and freelance marketing consultant with a focus on food and cooking.
There is an overwhelming choice of barbecue joints in Texas, with over twenty iterations in Waco alone. How to choose? Do you like your brisket lean or capped with gooey fat? Do you prefer a spiced rub or a puddle of sticky sauce? What kind of sauce? Spicy, sweet, vinegary, mustardy—and what kind of sides with that, shug?
If you like marbled pork brimming with juices, freshly-made pickles, creamy street corn packed with cilantro, and a hefty dose of black pepper crusting on your brisket and ribs, Helberg Barbecue is the spot for you.
Take a look at Creative Waco’s interactive public art map, and you might be surprised at the depth and diversity of art, from wall murals to sculptures to fountains and memorials. But there are many more areas without public art. Could these areas benefit from thoughtful public art and placemaking? If so, who should be involved in the decision-making and funding of such projects?
Public art, as the name implies, is freely available for everyone to enjoy. But unlike other cities, Waco currently has few pathways to create artwork that reflects the history, values, and ambitions of the entire community. Public art in Waco is currently funded primarily by the generosity of private donors. And while philanthropists have always had a hand in financing public art projects—and thank goodness for that!—a new initiative in Waco is intent on creating more mechanisms for funding, selecting, and including the wider population in decisions about public art.
Boba fans love it, tea nerds flock to it, and dumpling freaks fall over themselves to snag boxes of hot pork or veggies dumplings and attend sold-out dumpling classes. Whatever you’re into, Cha Community has a place for you at the table.
Cha Community, the vision of Jaja Chen and Devin Li, is an intentionally inclusive boba tea shop on Franklin Avenue in downtown Waco and North Main Street in Temple. Chen and Li’s mission is twofold: offer the most authentic boba tea and snacks in Waco and create a space that fosters diversity, conversations, and connections that bridge cultural divides.
You don’t need a green thumb to appreciate the centering effects of a well-tended garden, and according to Donna Nickerson of Da’Shack Farmers Market, you don’t need a green thumb to cultivate your own garden. But you will need to get there before the end of June!
Da’Shack, a plant nursery, farmers market, and mental health hub in an East Waco residential neighborhood just off Waco Drive, is Nickerson’s vision for a holistic approach to mental and physical health. Nickerson, a licensed psychotherapist with a thriving, multi-location practice in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, has been cultivating a growing fan base of Wacoans since she opened the doors to Da’Shack in 2017, and she’s just getting started.
Until Shamica Evans opened Waffle Chic in 2019, Waco was bereft of a solid chicken-and-waffles joint. Since then, several restaurants and food trucks have begun offering chicken and waffles on their breakfast and brunch menus, but you want to head to Waffle Chic at 901 La Salle Avenue (next to the Cen-Tex Hispanic Chamber of Commerce) for the most creative offerings in town, not to mention the inclusive, welcome-to-the-family vibes cultivated by Evans.
If you attended high school in the US, you probably read Arthur Miller’s play The Crucible. But let’s face it, you likely forgot about it not long after, except perhaps for a lingering memory that someone in the play saw someone else with the devil, and things got a little crazy.
And sure, while you may not have seen The Crucible performed, you might also remember it was Miller’s ‘50s-era response to McCarthyism and the persecution of artists and free thinkers under the guise of rooting out communism. And you likely recall, even from the text, the sense of looming catastrophe and rising panic Miller conjured.
Now you have a chance to catch the final weekend of Silent House Theatre’s production of The Crucible and experience the palpable terror, tragedy, and tumult of a literal and figurative witch hunt. It won’t be a comfortable performance, but then, that’s the point.
Native Wacoans who didn’t grow up visiting Helados La Azteca for mangonadas and limón popsicles have likely been driving by the location at 3302 Franklin Avenue for decades without knowing what they were missing.
For more than twenty years, Helados La Azteca has been serving up Jalisco-style frozen treats, candies, and savory snacks, making it one of Waco’s oldest ice cream parlors in operation. While the Franklin location was originally founded in 1998 by Alfredo Garcia and his brothers, it is now operated by Alfredo with the help of his immediate family, most notably his son Eddie, who inherited his father’s entrepreneurial spirit and has recently opened two more locations in Waco.
Tropical Ice Cream Dreams
First-time visitors to Helados La Azteca can’t go wrong at the brand new location on North Valley Mills Drive next to Don’s Humidor (although the smaller shop next to Lalo’s Coffee on Colcord Avenue, also owned by Eddie, is another great choice). The largest of the three Waco shops, the Valley Mills location boasts the most varieties of ice cream flavors and offers plenty of seating for friends and families.
Hot pink tables and walls covered in bright, tropical-hued murals create a cheery, playful atmosphere in which to peruse the substantial selection of treats. Condiment stations near the door offer hot sauces, chamoy, and other savory toppings for your ice creams and fresh fruit cups.
You’ll find a small array of Blue Bell ice cream, mostly kid-themed flavors like Blue Monster and Krazy Kolors, but those in the know will try the ice creams and popsicles still made in-house by Alfredo, Eddie, and their small, dedicated staff at the Franklin location.
The Garcia family purchases their plain ice cream base from a supplier and adds their own ingredients such as fresh fruits, jams, cakes, chocolates, and candies to create their custom flavors. This allows them to avoid the heavy costs incurred from running a full-scale creamery, while still making creative ice creams at a price accessible to most Wacoans.
The result is a light, creamy ice cream with a touch more iciness than your typical custardy artisan joint, and at Helados La Azteca, that’s a good thing. All of the flavors from rich chocolate (made from Carlos V milk chocolate bars) to coconut are light on the palate and the belly, allowing you to float out of the shop and back into the punishing Texas heat without feeling bogged down.
Alfredo still makes most of the classic flavors like fresa y crema, guava, and rompope, while Eddie experiments with more unusual ingredients. The classics are lovely, particularly the mango, which is brightly tropical, sour, and just salty enough to make the fresh mango pop. But you don’t want to miss out on Eddie’s more creative additions to the menu.
The avocado ice cream is surprisingly complex and tasty, with a heavily creamy mouthfeel and tiny, chewy-tender flecks of fresh avocado dotted throughout. Sure, you’ll taste the expected fatty richness of the avocado, but you’ll also find fruity-floral notes and hints of vanilla which are all derived from the avocado itself, and help elevate the fruit to a new level of yum.
Some of Eddie’s newest flavors are sensory revelations. The Thai tea ice cream with Oreos, inspired by Eddie’s friend Devin Li at Cha Community, combines childhood flavors of cookies and cream with the sweet-bitter-floral qualities of good Thai tea. It is both familiar and unexpected, almost sorbet-like in texture, and the chocolate-black-tea pairing is a knockout.
The matcha ice cream, another Cha Community-inspired offering, features just a touch of matcha’s signature grassy bitterness, with the floral notes of the matcha and the gentler green tea tannins taking center stage.
Then there’s the nostalgic Abuelita ice cream, made with Abuelita brand Mexican hot chocolate, which opens with sweet cinnamon notes that are rounded out by the flecks of hot chocolate and that unmistakable, soft sugary crunch that can only come from Abuelita. This one is so addictive and transportative that you’ll wish you sprang for that extra scoop. (But now you know.)
Other must-tries are the Gansito, a vanilla ice cream packed with chunks of Ganisto Mexican snack cakes (vanilla cake, strawberry jam, chocolate coating), and the queso, made with sweet, crumbly panela cheese and thickly-striped with raspberry jam.
And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
Snacks For Every Age & Palate
Step away from the ice cream counter and you’ll find freezer chests full of house-made popsicles in flavors such as tequila, sandia, pepitas con chile, kiwi, and Ferrero Rocher alongside ready-made cups of frozen fresh fruits combined with chamoy. At the counter next to the ice creams, you’ll see fresh chunks of watermelon, pineapple, strawberries, melons, and mangoes ready to be stuffed into a cup or skewered on a stick, smothered with chamoy, or placed on top of your favorite scoop.
Candy freaks will appreciate the Mexican sweets in small baskets near the counters—everything from de la Rosa marzapán to tiny Carlos V candy bars—but gummy candy devotees won’t want to miss the trollies stocked with items from another local business, Tastin’ Texas.
It may not sound like much, but if you are a gummy fanatic and haven’t had a Gusher, Fruit-by-the-Foot, or Sour Patch Kid smothered in chamoy and rim dip, essentially a customized version of Tajin spices such as lime and mild chile peppers, then it’s possible you haven’t lived.
A generous package of Gushers will set you back $6, and you’ll be grinning like a fool as you prize each sticky blob out of the mound of stuck-together gummies, pop one in your mouth, and lick the spiced goo from your greedy fingers. They are a simple pleasure to devour thanks to the perfect balance of sweet syrupy fruit and savory-spiced sprinkles, and they are the top-selling non-frozen snack at Helados La Azteca.
Round out your dessert with a cup of elotes, a bag of Cachitos chile-lime chips, and a glass of agua fresca in flavors like fresa, limon, or pineapple-spinach, and that’s your dinner ruined. (And an added bonus: now you don’t have to cook dinner.)
A Legacy of Frozen Delights
“I’ve been doing this since I was a kid,” says Eddie Garcia, who signed his first lease for Helados La Azteca on Colcord when he was just 21 years old.
“Literally when it started, it was me, my mom, my dad, and my siblings selling ice cream and bananas,” says Eddie. The Garcia family was primarily wholesaling to twenty or thirty Latinx stores in Dallas and Houston until the early 2000s, when they decided to begin selling to the Waco public.
“The business was growing, and we started hiring employees, adding fruit and mangonadas to the menu, and that was until I was about 19 years old, working with my parents—with my dad mainly,” says Eddie. “And then my older brother opened another location in Haltom City in Fort Worth, and from there I got the inspiration to do the same, and that’s where the Colcord location comes in, in 2019. Since then, I’m looking to expand as much as I can. That’s my dream—to make it go as big as it can.”
So far, Eddie seems to be on track to meet his goals. Now 25 years old, Eddie owns and operates three businesses on Colcord Avenue, Helados La Azteca, Dulceria La Azteca (where he sells more candy, snacks, and piñatas), and Lalo’s Coffee.
Your average 25-year-old might be weighed down by shouldering the burden of a family business and the responsibility of running multiple enterprises in different locations. But Eddie wears the mantle well, navigating the daily business stresses with grace and calm.
“Watching my dad and seeing that business, it’s like another day for me. It’s like I’ve been doing it since I was a kid. It doesn’t feel out of the ordinary for me. It’s very—I guess natural would be the word.”
Learning to Lead
But there were learning curves, as there are for all small business owners. For Eddie, it was learning to loosen his grip on the reins and hire help.
“As a Hispanic, coming from my dad’s knowledge, they don’t even have managers or supervisors. It’s ‘I’m here all day. I’m here managing all day, every day.’ So, it was tough for me to transition from that to needing help and realizing this will make my life easier. I’ve only been doing it [working with supervisory help] for a year, and it has helped my schedule so much. It’s just about seeing the bigger picture, I think.”
Fostering a sense of community within his team of employees has been a crucial component of Eddie’s approach to growing his business.
“We are very blessed with our employees,” says Eddie. “We have really good managers that find people who care. People tend to stay at the job for a year at least, and I feel like we all kind of get along. We have very flexible schedules. I hate making people come to work when they have something else to do, even if it’s like a date. We understand. We know you have a life outside of here, so we try to work around people’s schedules. But I think that connection with all of us getting along like friends and family makes it easier for them to want to stay and want to work. It’s that connection. You can’t just treat them like employees because at that point, they’re going to look at this job like it’s just a check. We’re trying to move away from that.”
Supporting staff, managing stress, putting out fires like power outages and register malfunctions—Eddie has navigated all these challenges as he has grown into his leadership role at Helados La Azteca.
“Once you get used to the business, you know what to freak out about and what not to freak out about,” says Eddie. “As you’re learning these things and as you become a business owner, you learn you’re going to be ok. We’re going to be fine. I guess with time, I began to learn how to not react over every little thing that happens.”
Popsicles in the Thousands
Most mornings, Eddie is running errands all over town, buying fresh fruit and ingredients for ice creams and popsicles, picking up change for the registers, and visiting his shop locations. His afternoons are devoted to production at the Franklin location, where he focuses mostly on his passion, making ice cream, while Alfredo makes up to 3,000 popsicles a day.
Recipe development is an exercise in spontaneity, usually inspired by Eddie’s trips to Mexico or Southern California, or collaborations with his friends in Waco’s food scene, like Li at Cha Community. With his production process dialed in, Eddie can create new flavor combinations quickly.
Eddie, who handles most of the social media marketing work with the help of Andreas Zaloumis, manager of Lalo’s Coffee, says, “It’s crazy to me how we can share a post for a new ice cream, and people will literally go the next day or the next week and try it. That is so special for me.”
Everyone has their own take on horchata, and if you can’t make it to Helados La Azteca for a cooling horchata, try this recipe of Eddie’s at home. You’ll need to begin the day before you plan to serve the horchata to allow time for the rice to soak. Otherwise, this recipe comes together in less than half an hour, and you’ll have horchata for days.
Recipe yields approximately 10 eight-ounce servings.
10 oz. white rice
1 cinnamon stick
1 c sugar
1 can evaporated milk
1 can lechera (condensed milk)
½ gal water
Place the rice and cinnamon stick in a small container or Tupperware and cover with water until the water reaches two inches above the rice. Store the rice mixture in your fridge and allow to soak for 8 –10 hours.
Remove the rice mixture from the fridge and puree it in a blender or food processor. The mixture will appear grainy.
Strain the blended rice and cinnamon mixture into a large, 1-gallon container or large mixing bowl or stock pot. Discard the rice and cinnamon. Add the evaporated milk and lechera to the rice milk mixture and stir to combine. Taste the mixture to evaluate the level of sweetness, then gradually add in the sugar, tasting as you go until the mixture is as sweet as you wish. (You may not need all the sugar.) Serve over ice or store in jars in the fridge. Well-refrigerated horchata will be good for 3–4 days.
From day one when he first opened his location on Colcord Avenue, Eddie has been supported by a loyal fan base hungry for a taste of Jalisco. Even during the pandemic, when many businesses struggled, the community rallied around Helados La Azteca.
“The community really came through, and we didn’t notice a huge drop in sales during the pandemic,” says Eddie. “And so we ended up doing well, and I decided to open the coffee shop during the pandemic, and it was the same thing. The community comes through for us every single time, so we’re really blessed.”
Helados La Azteca has three locations: 3302 Franklin Avenue, 1500 Colcord Avenue, and 1412 North Valley Mills Drive. Most locations are open from 11:00 am to 10:00 pm, seven days a week.
Learn more about Waco’s local food scene on the Waco Insider podcast Eat, Drink, Repeat, hosted by Angelica Mazé.
The spirit of Oaxaca comes alive with Oaxacan Gold: Illuminating Mystical Mexico, Art Center Waco’s new exhibit showing now through August 13.
On the Friday before opening night, Greg Davis, artist, filmmaker, photographer, and fourth-generation Baylor Bear, is moving from room to room, unpacking sculptures and hanging his photographic portraits of Día de los Muertos dancers, master weavers, mescaleros and agave farmers, and curanderos in Art Center Waco’s light-filled gallery. Davis is debuting his evocative photographs of Oaxaca’s cultural traditions alongside the artworks of Oaxacan artists, intertwining human stories with elements of nature, spirit, and light. While he works, he explains the impetus for this project and what moves him as an artist.
While Davis created and curated Oaxacan Gold, it is very much a collaboration and conversation between his work and that of the artists he photographed and whose works are also on display.
“This is not only about my work,” explains Davis as he sets up the exhibit. “It’s also an exhibition about master artists in Oaxaca creating folk art.”
As a contributing photographer for National Geographic, Davis is aware that a truly representative story is only as good as the person telling it. A collection of photographs on their own, taken by an outsider, might leave the artist’s subjects silent and objectified. But there is an interweaving here, a fluidity between the artist and his subjects such that the subjects have agency in their own representation. Davis’s work moves in and around those artists, paying homage to their artistry while expressing his own spiritual connection to their work.
All of the exhibit descriptions are displayed in both Spanish and English, and several of the Oaxacan artists’ placards feature QR codes that, when scanned, play a short film clip from Davis of the artist at work.
One wall displays portraits of an old Oaxacan curandero, or healer, holding a psilocybin mushroom at his altar, accompanied by a placard that tells the story of Maria Sabina.
Maria Sabina, a 1950s-era Oaxacan curandera, was coerced into sharing the healing secrets of her mushrooms with white American author and ethnomycologist Gordon Wasson. According to Davis, Wasson promised to keep her secrets safe and then, in 1957, he published a tell-all article in Life Magazine. Sabina’s people turned on her for betraying their cultural heritage, and the US went wild for magic mushrooms.
It is a tale of cultural appropriation, misogyny, and betrayal that speaks directly to the question of who is behind the lens, the pen, or the voice that tells the story. But Davis’s work takes care to acknowledge these pitfalls by creating space for his subjects to speak for themselves and tell their own stories.
A Spirit in Everything
Davis was drawn to Oaxaca for its light, its spirit, its people, and its strong ties to the cultural heritage and traditions of the region. But much of what shapes Davis’s work, from the subjects he chooses to the stories he tells, is guided by unseen hands.
“There’s a lot of serendipity and synchronicity—I call them God winks—in my work, I think in any artist’s work,” says Davis. “There are a lot of synchronicities that happen that feel like there’s something greater helping you create this work.”
As an example, Davis rushes over to a black-and-white photograph of Jose Garcia Antonio, a blind, septuagenarian potter Davis photographed in Antonio’s studio. Hanging on the wall behind Antonio is a psalm in Spanish that speaks about God’s light. Walking to another room, Davis explains that while he had been working with illumination as a theme for the exhibit, it wasn’t until his girlfriend noticed the psalm in Antonio’s photograph that it all came together.
As he turns to take in the room beyond that of Jose Garcia Antonio’s clay figures, he points out that it is filled with devils. Davis’s black-framed photographs of heavily shadowed figures in horned masks hang next to exquisitely-carved wooden masks from artist Alejandro Vera Guzmán.
Three walls of darkness face one wall of light, an eerie photograph of a crucifix hovering semi-transparent and ghost-like in front of a shaded garden. Framed in white, hung slightly higher than all of the other images in the exhibit, and reflecting the muted sunlight through the gallery windows, the figure of Christ simultaneously suffers and radiates. Printed above him is Psalm 36:9, “For with you is the fountain of life. In your light, we see light.”
“God winks,” says Davis. “It all circles around to the divine in all of us,” he says, emerging from the room of devils to the wall just beyond, upon which his artist’s statement is inscribed in gold lettering.
“There is a spirit in everything,” he reads aloud. “In the spaces in between. Even in the silence. There is a timelessness. A wisdom well beyond knowing.”
Davis’s exhibit explores the ways in which spirit, both human and divine, weaves its way through Oaxacan culture, through the work of Oaxacan artists, and through his own work.
“The Divine manifests itself through nature,” Davis reads from his artist’s statement, “from the plants and animals that we rely on to nurture and express ourselves to the passage of time as we expand both internally and universally.”
Nature is present throughout Davis’s works. A photograph of a weaver dying his yarn is presented next to the yarns themselves along with pots of dyeing materials such as cochineal and indigo. A photograph of a dyer’s hands stained by indigo completes the tableau, while in the next room over, a closeup, painterly photo of an agave plant is hung by a photograph of a mescalero and agave farmer. Cacao pods, marigolds, piercing sunlight, moody skies—these natural elements are all woven into the stories of Davis’s Oaxaca.
“All of this is humans engaging with nature,” says Davis, “from the masks being carved from the Montezuma cypress trees to the alebrijes by master artist Jacobo Ángeles Ojeda.”
The alebrijes of Jacobo Ángeles Ojeda and his wife Maria are folk art sculptures of fantastical, brightly-colored beasts. Exquisitely crafted, the three- or four-foot-tall figures are carved out of copal wood and painted with intricate designs in a riot of rich, warm colors.
“Jacobo and María’s work was in front of Rockefeller Center in New York City during the Day of the Dead celebration last year,” says Davis. “And this piece has a cool story,” says Davis, walking over to a crate full of sculptures wrapped in paper. “I’m a fourth-generation Baylor Bear. My grandmother went to Baylor from 1890–1891. And then there’s my grandad, my dad, and me. So, I commissioned Jacobo to make this alebrijes.”
“Because of my love for Baylor University, I wanted to have a bear with a golden-eyed owl mask to represent the wisdom that comes from the university. So this is what he’s created,” says Davis, holding up a photo of the yet-to-be-unwrapped sculpture. “And all my fraternity brothers and I from Alpha Tau Omega chipped in enough to donate this piece to the permanent collection of Art Center Waco.”
Its athletic body painted in green and yellow patterned stripes and striped with Zapotec hieroglyphs, the bear lunges forward, its face covered by a dark green-and-gold-patterned owl mask with gleaming 24-karat gold eyes. It appears at once both fierce and knowing.
Walking through the Valley of Darkness
Greg Davis wasn’t always an artist, but he’s been taking photographs since 1987, when he was the photographer for his school newspaper in Livingston, Texas.
“I was the editor and photographer for the high school newspaper,” says Davis. “Dad had a Canon AE-1 film camera that I used. But nothing in my early work said, ‘This kid’s got it.’ I wasn’t a prodigy.”
When he came of college age, Davis’s father persuaded him to forgo art school in favor of an education at Baylor University. His father offered to help pay for Davis’s tuition if Davis agreed to contribute as well, which he did by working at the Elite Cafe (now Magnolia Table).
“I put the camera down. I didn’t do anything with it and eventually ended up in the tech world,” says Davis. “And then I woke up at thirty-five in 2004, and the valley of darkness happened.”
“I lost five family members in about four years,” he says. “I was attacked by a gang and got forty stitches in my head and neck from a violent, unprovoked attack. I got thirty stitches in my ear to put it back together—bottle over the head, nearly killed me. So, death, destruction—I didn’t trust anybody. I had infidelity from a girlfriend at that time. I lost most of my savings to that point in a bad financial move. My dog did not die, or it would have been the perfect country Western song.”
Davis began drinking to ease the weight of his burdens.
“That wasn’t the answer,” says Davis. “I quit drinking. Well, first I rolled out of bed one night, and I just lifted my arms up and said, ‘I surrender. You got me on my knees.’ It’s still emotional. I said, ‘Use me, and I’ll forever speak of it, if you can just come down and help me out a little bit.’”
“And that’s when God winks, serendipity, began happening in my life, and I took that as a message,” continues Davis. “I started following all these little breadcrumbs, and they led me to sell everything I owned in 2004. I quit my job with Hewlett-Packard and went around the world for one year with a $400 Olympus point-and-shoot. And when I got back to the US, someone convinced me to set up on a street corner and sell these pictures.”
“I call them my chicken coop days,” he chuckles. “I sat on a corner in Austin in a little art market and people couldn’t get enough. It was the spark that I needed, and now it’s led to this. But it started with surrender, and then intention, intuition, and grit. Grit’s eighty percent of it.”
Davis’s intention, intuition, and grit have paid off. He has had a solo exhibition at the Museum of the Southwest featuring his photographs of pilgrims to India’s 2013 Kumbh Mela, that he later took on tour and showed at Art Center Waco. His work is featured in the new National Geographic coffee table book, America the Beautiful, and his work now hangs in institutional and private collections around the world.
“At the end of the day, for my work, it’s what moves me,” says Davis. “It’s what moves me emotionally or what I’m called to document. What person I’m engaging with at the moment and who I connect with. What particular story that approaches me, almost. I mean, I go towards these places, but destiny ultimately leads me to the moment, the exact moment that I press that button. These moments speak to me and they want to be heard.”
In 2019, the initial pilot project that’s become Chalk Waco was the brainchild of MC Art Supplies, the Central Texas Artist Collective, Cultivate 7twelve, and Creative Waco. Their goal was to provide a corridor on Austin Avenue to display the work of local artists for runners participating in the Silo District Marathon. It came to life as a small, two-block affair, with ten-to-fifteen businesses participating and sponsoring the artwork, but the response from the community was so resoundingly positive that it returned, albeit in a smaller incarnation, in 2021 after a hiatus due to the pandemic.
This year, Creative Waco has partnered with four local markets to bring in more vendors, food trucks, and musicians to entertain the estimated 15,000 people who will attend the event. Over the coming weekend, Chalk Waco will span four blocks of Austin Avenue in downtown Waco and feature street art, wall murals on the 7th Street Plaza, a fashion show highlighting local designers, live music, and over a hundred vendors selling everything from tacos to t-shirts… and everything in between.
There’s a new Mediterranean restaurant in Waco, and it may just be the best eatery you’ve never heard of.
Laziza Mediterranean Cuisine, a small, casual cafe tucked away next to Crunch Fitness in the Westview Village shopping center, serves up jaw-droppingly good meals cooked to order by owner and chef Mouna El Boustani. Laziza’s sign has yet to be installed, so you’ll feel extra in-the-know when you cruise past the gym bunnies, slip through Laziza’s door, and sidle up to the counter for a memorable meal at the near-hidden location.