For coffee-consuming regulars, mornings are nothing to mess with. Black coffee with no cream, no sugar, and no time to sit and enjoy the java.
However, Mr. Coffee Bean on Westgate Parkway has a unique way of making mornings, and any other hour of the day for that matter, a bit more enjoyable.
Celebrating his first year of ownership of the shop, Chris Green has made it his mission to support the community through his coffee, even on the toughest of Monday mornings.
The shop smells like a sweet blend of a fresh pot of coffee, and scents from baked scones and cinnamon rolls dance around the open-concept area. A few intimate tables give customers a chance to take a seat, even for a brief moment before starting their day.
After looking around at the local art that hangs on the walls, a customer’s gaze may go straight to the source of the bakery smells — the pastry bar. Before they know it, they find themselves ordering a two-pound cinnamon roll with a drink made by Green himself, who greets every customer with a smile and has memorized every regular’s drink order no matter how complex.
However, the quaint and cozy coffee shop that customers make a point to stop by today has come a long way since Green took ownership just one year ago.
A small change of name and a new logo gave Green high hopes that floods of customers would rush through his doors to try drinks that they perhaps never knew existed, and, of course, the pastries that Dothan now knows and loves.
Despite his hopeful thinking, only six people came in on the shop’s first day, and a lonely $46 sat in the register.
“I thought to myself like, ‘Man, what have I done? This isn’t good,'” said Green. “I just told myself, you know, ‘Even if all I can do is pay my phone bill with this place, it’ll be worth it.’ I was, and still am, really passionate about this place.”
Before owning the shop, Green worked in the radio industry for 17 years. He said that the chance to own a small business arose after being laid off, and he jumped on the opportunity.
He mentioned that although his first day was not what he had anticipated, it has since grown to fill the people of Dothan’s cups with local coffee, and bellies with pastries made in-house, including the notorious two-pound cinnamon roll.
“This community has given me so much, as just someone that lives here and as a business owner. I can’t stress enough how thankful I am to the people here for helping this business grow and thrive,” Green continued, “Dothan is a special place, and it’s filled with incredibly special people. I’m proud to have a business here.”
Green stressed the importance of the help from the community, and does his part in sharing support to other businesses as well.
“Everything we have here is made locally. We use some coffee from Headland Roasting Co., and we also have our own brew. It’s all about local. Local, local, local. I carry Working Cows Dairy milk that people put into their coffee and have worked with local honey farmers and have gotten their products available for customers to use here as well,” he said.
To commemorate the success of the business and say thank you to the community and local businesses for their support, the shop is giving away free 12-ounce cups of the house blend this week. Additionally, Green suggests keeping an eye on the shop’s social media pages for additional deals and steals.
“I hope people come in and check us out. I want them to put our brew to the test. Or even if you don’t like coffee, you can come in and ask for something and we’ll try to throw it together. Just stop on in and try things,” Green said.
By Kayla Rutledge
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