The smell of roasted beans; the sound of distant neighbors connecting; the view of a city we’ve all grown to love… You know what I’m talking about before I even talk about it: Small town coffee shops.
Some areas are limited to just one or two to find their favorite iced/steamed pick-me-ups, but our Kenosha has a surplus of options to either frequent or rotate around. From The Buzz, to “the dose”, to Bristol 45, and plenty of spots in between, we have our fair share of brands, baristas, and atmospheres to choose from.
Fresh new takes on what a coffee shop can look like surprised us with the recent add of the modern Stella (among the dining options at The Stella Hotel & Ballroom is Café at The Stella) in the heart of downtown or the 7-year tenure of the Buzz which has quite literally lived up to its name, buzzing with a steady flow of customers in and out throughout the day.
Go back in time and you’ll find the hype that came from six horses hauling in what we know as Franks' Diner nearly 100 years ago affording us a diner/hot spot for a morning boost, which has now put us into an era of serving every Kenoshan as long as we’ve all been alive. What history! With that history, has brought great interest including service to people such as Mark Ruffalo, Lovie Smith, and The Three Stooges to name just a few.
But what is it? What is the difference, here? Why do so many of these coffee shops “make it”? Why do they withstand the tests of times… including a global pandemic? Well, if I sit here (presently in The Daily Dose) and take a minute to focus on the sounds around me… Let me pause….
I’ve done this 60-second exercise at other spots such as The Coffee Pot, and I’ll tell you what the common thread is:
Picture the ring of a doorbell as the front entryway opens and you are immediately met with the sound of a barista knowing the names of those entering. It seems trivial… It’s just a name. But I have sat in so many coffee shops around Kenosha, and that common link has forced me to believe that there’s something special about both those working and those entering.
“Hey Mark, I’ll be right with you.”
“Good morning gorgeous (he says to a sweet senior woman), the usual?”
I myself have been met by baristas knowing my name… and you know what? It’s not small. They are seeing hundreds of faces a week if not more. And they know my name? My name.
And you know what else, I know many of theirs that have been and are currently waking up early to serve me and so many others that rely on that beautiful sugar-flavored-coffee-milk every. Single. day.
And thus, it’s twofold; they know us, and we know them. The heart of “Support Local” has been pumped through our veins and we are coming through. If you know your neighbor and it seems natural… good - good for you. Or if you’re someone who goes in, flashes the same barista a smile day in and day out, but hurry off to work or home or the gym… I urge you to pause. Ask them their name. Thank them. Get to know a neighbor.
These same baristas welcome newcomers, as well, with a friendly “Hello” and smile.
Thanks for supporting local!
Submitted by Jessica Sullivan, a local resident who enjoys visiting local restaurants, shops, and attractions with her family.