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I'm Opening a Coffee Shop!

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by BrianW, Nov 13, 2012.

  1. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    Glad to hear it's going well Brian!
    Are your beans a secret or can you spill? =)
     
  2. BrianW

    BrianW Well-Known Member

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    I use Armando's Blend from Crimson Cup roasters in Ohio. The beans not only have the best flavor of all the beans I "auditioned", but they are sourced through Growers First (www.growersfirst.org), which I'm proud to be a part of.
     
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  3. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    Cool, will check those out if available to end users once my Klatch batch is used up.
     
  4. TonyD

    TonyD Who do we think I am?

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    How is the love music coming along.
     
  5. Cees Alons

    Cees Alons Moderator
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    How's the shop going, Brian?



    CoffeeDrinkers.jpg


    Cees
     
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  6. BrianW

    BrianW Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for your interest, Cees. It's going great.

    Being an independent gives me the flexibility to choose the very best beans and roasters, and it really makes a difference. Every single day, I have customers tell me they had no idea coffee was supposed to taste this good. It's really gratifying to hear.

    My Yelp reviews are better than I ever could have imagined. It actually warms my heart to read some of them. I really do have the best customers in the world, and I treasure their patronage.

    I recently did some "renovation" to the shop, installing pressed tin ceiling tiles, a vintage-look ceiling fan, and more light fixtures. These were things my wife and I planned to do from the beginning, but hurricane Sandy delayed delivery of the tin tiles, so we opened the shop with plain white acoustic ceiling tiles and no fixtures. What a difference it makes! No more looking like a cookie-cutter sandwich shop.

    Business is still growing. I get new customers every day, and not one has left unhappy.

    I also get daily compliments on the music we play in the shop. Instead of contemporary pop music, I play Jazz (mostly piano/bass/drums trios -- not much sax) from the 40s, 50s, and 60s, Big Band from the 30s and 40s, acoustic, melodic New Age (no, really, there's some good stuff, if you look hard enough), and intricate guitar pieces -- all without distracting lyrics so students can study. The music is provided by Pandora (licensed through DMX, so I have a commercial license to play it in the shop), and building/tweaking the station has been a lot of fun. I mean, really, who knew there was a version of "Take Five" played on guitar? That's just cool. I don't know of any coffee shop that plays anything remotely similar to what we play, and our customers (even the "kids-these-days" customers) love it.

    It's been a lot more work than I thought it would be, but it's also been a lot more fun than I thought it would be. If I can keep it up, I think I'll have a pretty decent business in a few years.
     
  7. Cees Alons

    Cees Alons Moderator
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    Ha, that's really great, Brian!

    I will try to find Yelp. :)



    Cees
     
  8. TonyD

    TonyD Who do we think I am?

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    Don't forget to like his fb page.
     
  9. Cees Alons

    Cees Alons Moderator
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    Won't do. I have no fb-account.


    Cees
     
  10. BrianW

    BrianW Well-Known Member

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  11. BrianW

    BrianW Well-Known Member

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    Well, it took (and continues to take) a lot of hard work, but my coffee shop now has a Five-Star rating on Yelp.


    ACHIEVEMENT UNLOCKED!


    (As they say.)
     
  12. antmumford

    antmumford Member

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    Hi Brian, relatively new to this forum and just came across your post whilst having a search for new threads to follow. The moment I saw coffee in the title I was all yours I loves me a good coffee.
    I'm from England but my wife and I are travelling the world soon and the first leg of our trip is a road trip across the US. We'll actually be driving up through Dallas heading into Oklahoma so I'll endeavour to drop by, say hi and sample this liquid gold of yours.

    We've put together a travel blog website that we'll be updating with new stories as we make our way round the world. If you're interested in taking a look, it's www.wepackedourbags.com

    Will definitely give you a shout out on there when we come visit as part of our Dallas post
     
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  13. t2smith

    t2smith Well-Known Member

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    Congratulations on the business Brian. I'm a little envious because all the local coffee shops in my area closed down causing me to become a Starbucks customer a couple years ago. I was a regular at a local Dawn Donuts for over 10 years and still haven't found a coffee I like as much as theirs.
     
  14. Cees Alons

    Cees Alons Moderator
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    Great achievement, Brian.

    And the comments on Yelp continue to be highly positive.


    Congrats!



    Cees
     
  15. BrianW

    BrianW Well-Known Member

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    Anthony, it would be great to see you when you make your way down here. It's a big metroplex, however, so I'll certainly understand if you can't swing by. Iceland, New Zealand, and Australia? I'm jealous! BTW, Australia's coffee culture is second to none. Be sure to sample it while you're there.


    I'm sorry about the local coffee shops in your area, Toby. I'm doing my best to keep the locals on the map. All the local coffee shops around here support and recommend one another. Each one offers a unique experience, and they all have just the best coffee.



    Not to brag or anything (but, yeah, it is to brag), but we also have all Five-Star reviews on Google-Plus. And Google came in and made a virtual tour of my shop. Check it out:


    https://www.google.com/maps/place/Firewheel+Coffee/@32.946037,-96.611405,3a,75y,22.09h,90t/data=!3m5!1e1!3m3!1s1me36OuZHu8AAAQpkAORrw!2e0!3e2!4m2!3m1!1s0x0:0x9c6538f6c3f06777!6m1!1e1


    It's something new Google is doing in their conversion from Google Places to Google Businesses, and my shop was one of the first they fish-eye-photographed for the virtual tour. (Yes, I'm a guinea pig.) They came in with motorized Cameras, tripods, a LIDAR sensor, and a special device that temporarily transports customers to an alternate dimension so the cameras can have an unobstructed view of the shop. (Okay, I'm kidding. They didn't actually have a LIDAR.) Yeah, that's me behind the counter making a Frappa-Dappa-Doo, or something.


    I love it when customers go through the virtual tour on their computers while they're in the shop: "Wow, it's almost as if I'm really here!"
     
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  16. Mike Frezon

    Mike Frezon Moderator
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    I always get happy when I see this thread bumped, Brian.


    Even happier when it's such good news! :thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup:


    Congratulations!
     
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  17. antmumford

    antmumford Member

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    Thanks for the response Brian. My wife and I have made the most of being so close to Europe so we've visited a few cities over the last couple of years. Now we've caught the travelling bug we're selling up and taking a year out to see the world.
    Will definitely be sampling coffee in every country we visit. I may even do a regular coffee blog post on our site to review places that serve great coffee.
    Was thinking of doing a Coffee tour in Columbia too where you learn the process and choose your own unique beans to keep. Just can't wait to get going and start the adventures.

    Anyway I will definitely stop in at yours and sample this award winning bean once we're over in your neck of the woods :D
     

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