Sometimes, a green coffee bag is also a sign.
Kirby Keomysay and Tyler Sutter, the owners of Omaha, Nebraska’s newest coffee spot, The Grind Coffeehouse, can attest to that.
While working with an interior designer to develop a salon studio space on the city’s west side, the two were batting around the idea of opening an adjoining coffee shop. Would it make sense for that location? Would it be doable?
Right then, while touring a covered bay area, they discovered an old, ripped, dusty burlap coffee sack on the ground.
“We were like, this is a sign,” Sutter told DCN.
That previously empty space has been transformed into The Grind Coffeehouse, which in late November opened its doors, greeting guests with high-quality coffee drinks and a clean, modern aesthetic.
For coffees, The Grind leans on beans roasted by the Kansas City, Missouri-based outfit Oddly Correct. The shop offers multiple Oddly Correct blends, including the Good Girl light roast, the Bad Dog medium/dark roast, and the Muffler cold brew blend. Classic coffee drinks occupy the menu alongside more experimental drinks like the Momma Mo’s thai iced tea and an iced matcha.
Oddly Correct owner Michael Schroeder helped the new owners with the ins and outs of coffee shop development, from layout and design to equipment and plumbing. Said Keomysay, “Michael not only was a great roaster and supplier but a great mentor.”
Simplicity and modernity were two of the primary concepts in the coffee shop design. The cafe is cashless, and customers are asked to order in one of three ways: a self-service kiosk on-site; a mobile order through the QR code; or mobile order-ahead for pickup. The shop relies on POS and payment tech platforms by Toast.
Keomysay said removing face-to-face ordering allows baristas’ main focus to be on beverage craft, although baristas are clearly available for assistance.
“You still get a greeting and instruction if you need it or wish for help,” Keomysay said. “You can certainly ask a barista and they’d be more than happy to assist.”
The Grind Coffeehouse has leaned on technology to promote the opening, finding some traction through Instagram and other online channels.
“The community has been extremely supportive,” Keomysay said. “We have gotten so much love and support. A lot of local bloggers and large Omaha accounts have posted us on social media, which has blown us away.”
Keomysay, an entrepreneur with a background in the beauty industry, said the coffee shop’s literal attachment to Ko & Co. Studios, where salon professionals can rent space, has created a natural symmetry.
“A lot [of tenants] would stop in for a pick-me-up refresher or early morning coffee or muffin and encourage their clients to check us out, so the crossover has been awesome,” he said.
Keomysay said the owners are envisioning multiple The Grind locations in the Omaha area, each repeating the relatively simple and streamlined menu.
What future locations may not have, however, is the old burlap sack. While the owners have still not discovered how or why the coffee bag got there, they’re currently planning on getting it framed — in essence, making it a literal sign.