Less than a year after opening at 12 N. Ninth St., the Sydney Roasting Co. café has a new home.
The business has moved from the former Wrinkle & Boon shop in downtown Lebanon to 722 Quentin Road, which is also in the city, in the plaza next to Little Caesars.
Zanetta Kok, who owns Sydney Roasting Co. with her husband, Kenny, said the Quentin Road site is about the same size as the previous location – 2,000 square feet or so – but is better laid out for a café.
“We wanted to create a space we designed,” she told LebTown.
They painted it teal, black and white – “our colors,” Kok said – and worked to make it “more efficient for an operating coffee shop.”
The Koks sought more of an industrial, steampunk look, as opposed to the vintage character of the previous building.
The relocated café, which seats around 50, opened Sept. 29. Including Kok and her husband, there are about 10 employees. A lot of potential customers are in the Oak Street area, within walking distance of Sydney Roasting Co., she said.
Most recently, the space sat vacant. Before that, it was a nail salon, according to Kok.
Sydney Roasting Co. “does typical coffee shop stuff,” she said, such as lattes, cappuccinos, espressos and fresh pastries baked on the premises. The bakery items include brownies, “really big chocolate chip cookies,” and cakes. There also are breakfast sandwiches and a light lunch menu.
One of the lunch sandwiches offered is the BLTA: a croissant with bacon, lettuce, tomato, avocado and provolone, with mustard.
Kok said she and her husband would like to expand the dessert menu and potentially add more lunch options.
Pam Shirk, the Downtown Lebanon Main Street manager, said she was very sorry Sydney Roasting Co. left downtown, but “I’m glad they’re still in the city.”
The café is open 5 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday to Friday; 7:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday; and 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday.
“Our entire menu is available all day,” Kok said.
The couple roasts their own coffee in a warehouse at the old Bethlehem Steel site on Lincoln Avenue. Both Sydney Roasting Co. and Kitty Town Coffee brands are sold at the café.
In a Jan. 6 article on the opening of the Ninth Street café, Kok told LebTown’s Faith Ishler, “I fell in love with coffee while working at the local coffee shops here in Lebanon. I worked at Legends Cafe, Timeless Cafe, and Cumberland Coffee & Tea. Growing up, I always saw myself ultimately running a cafe. When the opportunity arose to open one here in the town I grew up in, it was an offer I couldn’t refuse.”
Kitty Town Coffee was started by the Koks in 2017 to support local animal shelters, which it still does. Each 12-ounce bag sold provides a week of food for a cat housed in a shelter as it waits to be adopted.
The coffee flavors are named after cats; The Albert Blend, for example, is “a super smooth breakfast blend from Brazil and Costa Rica,” according to kittytowncoffee.com. Albert is a Maine coon the Koks adopted when he was 9 weeks old.
In the beginning, when the couple’s entrepreneurial dream was just getting off the ground, a popcorn popper roasted the coffee. Today, it’s a different story.
“We don’t wave our hands and do a little coffee dance around our roaster,” the Koks explained on the website. “We use data and technology to consistently create a delicious product for a price that makes sense.”
One of the more popular coffees is Tall Dark & Handsome, a blend from Brazil, Guatemala and Costa Rica, “which is a dark roast but very smooth,” Kok said.
Another is Smooth Operator, a light-roast blend from Brazil and Costa Rica. “I like to say it’s the smoothest coffee you’ve ever tasted,” she said.
And there are flavored coffees, such as Kentucky Bourbon, Vanilla Buttercream and Jamaican Me Crazy. Bags of Kitty Town and Sydney Roasting Co. coffee are sold in the café as well as online and in local stores.
Food and drink from the café menu also can be ordered online. “We do a decent amount of online business,” Kok said.
The couple just introduced a 10% discount, she said, for health-care workers, teachers, police officers, military personnel and students.
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