Would a rose by any other moniker smell as sweet? That’s a complicated question for the San Diego-based Moniker Group, Inc., whose entrepreneurial umbrella shades a variety of Moniker-branded projects.
There’s a multipurpose arts and business center called Moniker Warehouse, an interior design firm called Moniker Design, and their own in-house high-end furniture line called Moniker Made. Their latest endeavor is an open-concept retail environment called Moniker General, currently being built inside an historic naval building at 2860 Sims Road on the grounds of the Liberty Station development of San Diego.
Located directly across from the Stone Brewing Company, Moniker General will have its own taproom operated by fellow SD brewfolk the 32 North Brewing Company, as well as a modular retail concept that includes some Moniker Made goods among other local makers. There will also be a Moniker Coffee stand, which, if successful, could be fodder for an off-shoot standalone Moniker Coffee concept in the future.
“The goal would be to build the brand in a way that it could stand alone, or it could be mixed with other different concepts,” Moniker Group Inc. CEO Ryan Sisson told Daily Coffee News. “The opportunity that we have to do it all together here is kind special.”
Said Sisson, “Our focus — the ‘why’ for our ‘what’ — is creating environments that help communities come together. Sometimes that can be retail, that can be coffee, that can be a warehouse space downtown for events, it’s a lot of different things.”
The coffee presence will be staffed by Moniker personnel, while the coffee will come by way of Pasadena’s Copa Vida, which recently expanded southward into the San Diego area. “We’ll have our own blend that we worked with Copa Vida on, and we’ll serve theirs as well,” said Sisson. Curtis brewers and a two-group La Marzocco Linea will be backed by a trio of Mahlkonigs behind the counter — the K30 Vario, K30 Twin and EK43, specifically. Nitro cold brew will be available on tap.
As for whether an in-house roastery might be in cards for Moniker Coffee, it’s not impossible, but not etched into the plan as it currently stands. “The growth of our company has always been based on the people that we have as a part of it, so if someone came on board that was very passionate about roasting and that’s what they wanted to do, I could see us potentially getting into that,” said Sisson. “But I also love collaborating with great people, and the guys at Copa Vida are phenomenal.”
Of the 4,200 square foot open-concept environment, about 1,000 square feet will be dedicated to the coffee area, although there won’t be walls between one area and the next. Moniker Coffee will share an L-shaped counter with the beer service area, and patrons are encouraged to float from zone to zone with beer or coffee or retail goods in hand. Another 1,000 square feet of outdoor seating will be available for customers as well as special events. Moniker General is currently projected to open in March, 2016.