Hi Everyone! Please be gentle...it''s my first time.


New member
Jan 27, 2007
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I would like to introduce myself. My name is Kim and I live in NY in the Catskills. I am looking into starting my own coffee shop, however I''m having some trouble and was wondering if I could encourage some advice from you?

This would be my very first business, ever! I''ve never worked in a coffee shop or any place that served coffee, however I was a waitress many years ago. My biggest concern first and foremost is, what my shop will look like? What type of theme will I have? I am quite eclectic and enjoy many styles, but I find myself coming back to French Provencial or French Country. I want a place that is relaxing and enjoyable, but I don''t really want people to lurk for too long i.e., no wi-fi.
I''m having trouble nailing down some basics premises for the shop. I thought originally I''d only serve coffee, espresso, cappucinos and the like, and then have a few things like scones, biscotti and muffins. Several of my friends have suggested that I also serve sandwiches and paninis. Others say I should try and serve breakfast and lunch. The county I live in is, for the most part, impoverished. There are, however many people who would probably be able to afford and enjoy a more upscale, posh place that I have in mind, however I don''t want to put off anyone and make some feel like they are not \"invited\". Businesses around here come and go, and we don''t have a huge population.

Let me give you a little info about where my shop will be located. 1 mile past
*a walmart
*a home depot
*a dunkin donuts
*a kentucky fried chicken
*a small strip mall with various small businesses
The road the shop will be on overlooks a huge, beautiful lake and my shop will have a full lake view. This will be in a newly constructed building. My partner is a physician and this will be where her new office is located. She and her collegue think it''s a great idea to have me right next door to their practice. They are med-peds doctors. There is also a physical therapist that will be in the building. There was also talk that I should have herbal teas and fat and sugar free items. Maybe make it a semi-healthy coffee shop. All this is just too much for me to take hold of.

I do plan on taking the barista course in portland, oregon before I start my practice and I''m an ok cook when it comes to the scones, biscotti and muffins. I''m not real creative with the sandwiches, but I guess I could learn. I would just like some advice from those who have done this or who know a thing or two about business. One more point. This shop is going to be run by just me. I don''t have anyone else in mind to help me. Is running a coffee shop a two person job? Should I be looking for help?
Thank you so much and I hope I get to know you all better and make some friends.


New member
Mar 7, 2007
Atlantic City, NJ
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Hi, Kim... I was just wondering how you made out? I am by no means an expert. We are not open yet, but I have done some research. Actually, I love doing research and soaking up as much information as I can.

I think the location sounds like it has potential. Usually, a company like DD does demographic rersearch on the area before they open a store. So, you may be in a good spot. I would also enlist some help. When you are busy you are going to need more than just you. And, as far as food goes, I might start out small and see what the demand is. I debated adding lunch and such to the menu, but I don't want to be a full service restaurant, so I will focus on items that compliment the coffee. The last thing I want is for someone to walk in and smell something other than coffee or pastry.

And, as far as design... the great thing about a coffee business is that it can be eclectic.

I'm curious to hear how you are doing.