I reached out to my buddy Aaron to record a podcast because I know his story and felt it would be great to share with people. We always have a really difficult time picking a place to meet. We usually find a pub that serves a good Guinness, but those are getting harder to find these days. We had a great one, but it closed down. So, I did what any good investigator does… I Googled. Aaron mentioned a new place that had opened on his side of town and I checked it out. It looked like a nice little community shop with a roaster. I was in.
It was difficult to get a real good first impression. The shop is one store within a larger building. The building was on a corner that went along the main road and turned down a side street. Esso was on the side of the building that went down the side street. It was hard to see from the road because they shaded the building with a half wall and shades. Once I got parked and walked up on the sidewalk, the shop was easy to find.
The store had to art fixtures on either side of the door along with a few chairs on the patio. Once the weather cools, off, this will be a nice place to sit and drink coffee. The art fixtures were…different. They were propane tanks that had been shot up and rusted out in the desert. How do I know this? Because I see it all the time when I go shooting out in the desert. I would never dump my garbage out there like that, but lots of people do (but really shouldn’t). I knew this was the “artsy” part of town, but I began to worry that this was going to be some silly eccentric artsy-fartsy shop where everyone looks down on you because you “don’t understand.”
The inside was small and very comfortable. I classify this as a “community shop,” which means it’s really intended for the immediate community. It’s a true third place. The design is very comfortable. This is a place I could easily spend all day. Even though there was not a lot of space, they varied the table sizes nicely.
I knew they roasted their own coffee, so I snooped for the roaster. It was hidden behind a fold out screen, which was disappointing to me. I think they should incorporate the roaster into the design, rather than try to hide it.
One thing that I like is that the espresso machine is a focal point. As soon as you come, your eye is drawn to the copper antique machine glistening at the back of the store. The textured tiles are used in a consistent but not overwhelming way. They add a nice texture to the otherwise flat walls.
The restroom was clean but unfinished. They did just open in March of this year, so it’s not going to be 100% complete.
Food, Drinks, Service:
We spoke to the barista, who was genuinely pleasant. The espresso was a three bean blend of Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Tanzania Peaberry. The barista advised that espresso was a citrus forward coffee. Aaron had a late and advised that it was quite good. The brewed coffee was a single origin from Nicaragua. It was complex and well roasted. It was happy hour, so I got it for half price too!
I didn’t get any food, so I can’t weigh in on that.
I highly recommend this place. The coffee is excellent. The environment is comfortable. They roast their own coffee and were pleasant to interact with.
Working for my life’s vision of writing stories in a beverage shop that I own.