Solstice Roasters, a Cleveland roasting company that has operated for three decades behind the scenes in the business-to-business realm, has stepped fully into the light of day.
The company recently opened its first brick-and-mortar cafe inside a sun-filled historic downtown space that was formerly home to the Peterson Nut store. The 3200-square-foot location on Carnegie Ave is also home to Solstice’s new coffee roastery, tying together elements of production and craft.
Hanging light fixtures and plants above high-top tables and chairs create a cozy ambiance for guests, while a second-story loft area with windows overlooks the roastery at the back of the space, giving guests glimpses of the roasting process.
The shop is just steps away from Progressive Field, the home to the Cleveland Guardians baseball team.
“Everybody knows this building, and more importantly, we’re very Cleveland-centric and pretty proud of our neighborhood,” Solstice Roasters Owner Joe Deinhart recently told DCN. “When you walk into our space, you’ll find the work from all over our community. The artwork comes from local minority artists, while the plants are [from] East Technical High School’s Horticulture and Design class, and we’ve taken pieces of unused wood to create tables and shelves.”
Deinhart has cultivated the Solstice Roasters wholesale business for more than 30 years, selling to high-end restaurants, coffee shop owners and institutions like the Cleveland Museum of Art and the Cleveland Orchestra. After the 2020 pandemic took hold, Deinhart decided to expand the brand.
“We’re probably one of the biggest coffee roasting companies in northeast Ohio that no one’s ever heard of,” Deinhart said. “So when the opportunity came to rent out a well-known building that had been around since the [1940s], I couldn’t pass it up.”
At the new shop, a Decent espresso machine along with two Mazzer grinders and a Fetco double brewer await the freshly roasted coffees. Deinhart continues to be involved in sourcing and roasting operations, while using a vintage Sivetz fluid-bed machine.
“Because we cater to high-end restaurants and organizations, we try to be consistent on our roasts,” Deinhart said. “I’m constantly checking coffee quality with every crop. Every new crop that comes, in we sit down and compare notes and flavor profiles, and then adjust our roasting time and temperature to meet the profile that we want.”
In addition to drip coffees, espresso-based drinks and other beverages, the shop offers fresh baked goods from The Grocery Kitchen and Market as well as sweets from Pop Culture Cleveland. The shop is continuing the local Peterson Nut legacy, offering nuts alongside a number of other Cleveland-made products.
“I have a passion for Cleveland and for coffee,” Deinhart said. “I want to make sure when people walk into our doors they experience both. We’ve been doing a pretty good job for the last 30-plus years of providing wholesale quality coffee, and now we can turn that into a single cup that anyone can enjoy.”
Solstice Roasters is located at 1101 Carnegie Ave in Cleveland, Ohio. Tell DCN’s editors about your new coffee shop or roastery here.
Shavantay Minnis is a writer based in sunny South Florida. She enjoys nature, giving back to the community and her sugar with a side of coffee.