A common question we get is "so what made you open a coffee shop?" We've certainly shared this story many times, but I don't think we've ever done so on the web. Maybe on social media, but it was a long time ago.
Soul Caffeine is the intersection of multiple dreams. When we (Mallory and Eric) lived in Washington, DC, Mallory worked at a commercial bakery. She talked about opening a bakery/coffee shop and how cool that would be. I wouldn't call it a strong urge, but it was something that was in the back of her mind.
When we moved back to Daphne we started to attend Daphne United Methodist Church. While volunteering and serving at Daphne we got close to Gabe and Lynn Holloway. They are special people. Gabe was one of the preachers and we left convicted after every sermon he preached. You know that feeling when you meet someone and things just really click? It was that way. We both had young families so we started hanging out.
In November of 2015 while chatting with Gabe at the DUMC office he shared with me a vision for a coffee shop that was also ministry. I had never heard of "third place ministry" but it sounded pretty cool. I can expand on what that is in another blog post, but this moment was the genesis. I went home and told Mallory about the conversation and how it was interesting they both shared an interest in opening a coffee shop. "Wouldn't it be funny if we opened a coffee shop with Gabe and Lynn?". "Ha, yeah."
In December, we were over at the Holloways and we started discussing the common dream of opening a coffee shop. Mallory shared her experience with baking. Gabe shared his vision for ministry in a coffee shop. It felt right. Nothing happened that day, but we all left the conversation hooked on the idea. Over the next couple of weeks Gabe and I had a few conversations that were semi-serious. Gabe calls me after Christmas and says you guys come over and let's have a serious conversation about this.
On January 1st, we sat in the living room of Gabe and Lynn's house and seriously talked about opening a coffee shop. We dreamed about it. We prayed about it. Then we decided. We were going to open a coffee shop. Two weeks later we signed a lease for 2004 US Hwy 98 Suite B and then we opened on March 21st. It happened that quickly.
This is a moment that changed life for both of our families. The change reverberated through our lives. There was no going back. We were on a mission.
We are thankful for where God has lead us and for all of the people we have met along the way. It truly is amazing how much can happen through a little coffee shop in Daphne, Alabama.