Before opening your own coffee shop…

Opening your own coffee shop is one of those dream jobs so many of us have had. I was torn between a coffee shop with mostly outside seating, a drive though little spot, or a larger location with laundry and lots of Internet access for hanging out.

The outside spot was limited in that I was in Oregon at the time. The Drive through was being done on every street corner… almost all with B-A-D coffee. The larger spot seemed perfect. So, I set out to find the little corner I could call mine… and my wife’s… and a close friend so we could have a few hours off a week.

My belief was that it just can’t be that hard. I owned several different businesses in the customer service arena so this should be a matter of tuning my current business model. After meeting with the coffee suppliers (not an approachable group since there are so many fly-by-night spots around), landlords and equipment manufactures, red flags were flying. There seemed to be more to this than being really nice, making a great cup of coffee (hopefully, over and over again) and supplying s soft seat to sit in. There was variables that played in such as water and electricity whose usage changed dramatically depending on what you were serving as well the price of product seemed to move around monthly.

In the end, I helped several friends get their locations going… one of the three made it through the first year. Not because they had a great cup of coffee, because they were conveniently located for quick access on the ‘going to work’ side of the road.

At the time there wasn’t any ‘good’ books on the subject of hitting it big in service coffee. Recently I was asked to pen a book on the hoops we had to jump to get the locations we did open, open. And the ongoing fun. Fun can be the happy customers and great word of mouth followings. Also, ‘fun’ can be sarcastic like issues of quality if your equipment isn’t kept in tune to the barometric changes of the day.

After working through several early drafts, I came across Debbie and Skip’s eBook on the same subject. They say it best with “In our book, Espresso Business Mistakes, we hand over to you, in writing, 49 significant mistakes we made in our coffee shop & espresso café business.” They provide examples of lessons learned so you wont get into the traps they did. Included is a bunch of additional items on putting a menu together, handling employees, cleaning schedules, secrets of coffee beans, marketing, and what the profitable products are.

Till I get done with writing my expieriances, theirs will do very well to keep future Coffee Shop Owners in the right frame of mind. Learn and practice what you read, it might just keep you afloat through the first year on the road to a long term fun place to be at.

How To Start A Coffee Shop From People Who Own One



I Love Coffee! A book you need if your like me

My name is Gary, and I’m a coffee lover. Actually, I really enjoy Espresso drinks the most.

Pretty much everyone I know is wise to my passion for great coffee. So, when they come over to visit, they expect something more than regular or french roast. For a while I played with ingreadients, timing, grind… all with mixed results. Sadly, only the fellow coffee fan knew the difference.

Then I found the book “I Love Coffee!”. I feared it would be a story book but was pleasantly surprised to find it was a book of 100 coffee drinks that I could easily make with items I already had. The not-so-serious coffee drinking guests were very pleased. Take a look if your looking for a new twist to your coffee drink… for you or for your guests.
I Love Coffee!: Over 100 Easy and Delicious Coffee Drinks

I Love Coffee!
I Love Coffee!: Over 100 Easy and Delicious Coffee Drinks


Espresso thoughts from South Italy is a site run by Michelle Fabio, an American writer and attorney who left the Anthracite Coal Region of Pennsylvania for her family’s ancestral village in Calabria, Italy.

Her site is filled with recipes, tips on blogging, book reviews, local happenings, and no non-sense thoughts. In the ‘Links’ area is a very large list of Italian bloggers and sites of interest to people thinking about moving to Italy. This hits home with us, while our family is from Sicily, we are looking to move to the northern area in the near future.



Automated Home Espresso Machine

Krups has introduced an espresso machine that is fully automatic. Add your water and coffee, and it will brew a cup to your specifications. The system is controlled through a digital menu with many options. Hardware features like a water filtration system and a steam nozzle for frothing milk are included. Krups states that you only have to clean the machine once a year too!

The Automatic Espresso Machine XP7225 is small enough to keep on your counter, 12.5 inches long, 9.5 inches wide, and 14.25 inches tall. Priced at $999.99 it is way more than the mini DIY machines but is amongst the lowest priced for full power Espresso Machines.

krups FullyAutoXP7225351x351


Relax and enjoy

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