You might dream of opening your own restaurant right out of culinary school. While it’s easy to open your own restaurant, have you ever considered the prospect of a coffee shop According to the data, coffee is so popular that many adults enjoy a cup of coffee every day. Plus, managing a coffee shop is a great way to expand your chef’s skills.
If the idea sounds particularly appealing, here are four dos and don’ts when it comes to opening your own coffee shop. These might be as energizing as three shots of espresso:
1. Find the right supplier
Coffee is made from coffee beans , and since you’re going to be supplying a lot of beans every day, you need a steady source of beans. It’s important to contact several different roasters when you’re choosing the source of your coffee. How many products can they offer? Do they offer discounts on your order? What other services can they provide, such as education? What is their policy on shipping beans ? The more you know in the first place, the better decisions you’ll make. An efficient coffee roaster is like a business partner who will accompany you almost every step of the way.
2. Research your coffee
You can only rely on your roaster so much, as a coffee shop owner you need to have your own level of expertise. All businesses mention that an effective “coffee geek” has several key characteristics. A true coffee expert knows everything about the roast they choose, from where the plants are grown (like the farm, altitude or environment) to cupping and the best brewing style. That means doing a lot of research, not just on the web, but drinking coffee to get the full picture. You also want to know about any competitor’s business strategy and understand the coffee they offer.
3. Don’t forget the food
Given your experience as a chef, of course you’ll be serving food in a cafe. However, it’s important that the food and coffee go together, and you can’t just serve them casually. What you want are dishes that go with your coffee drinking experience, which include donuts, muffins, benes, coffee cakes, and simple sandwiches like bacon, eggs , and cheese . Or, go a step further, add coffee to some recipes. For example, coffee can be used to make barbecue sauce, as a marinade for meat, and to bake cookies and cakes. This way, you create a direct connection between the coffee and the food, which may attract customers.
Life in almost any kitchen will have extra stress. However, running a coffee shop also has its own unique challenges. A lot of people don’t have proper expectations when opening a coffee shop.
“It’s physically demanding. You’re on your feet for 10 hours a day. You have to be upbeat and happy with your employees and customers.”
To be truly successful, you need to hire the right help. Even a couple helping out a few times a week can be a huge burden on you. It’s also important to have effective time management skills, which can lighten your workload. This way, you can have more time and energy dedicated to customer service.