Though they'd never run a coffee shop before, local tattoo artist Mike Hedrick and his girlfriend, former teacher Shelly Mirenda, picked up gold in this year's Indy Best Of with Humble Coffee (2103 Templeton Gap Road, facebook.com/humblecoffeecompany), which they bought in early April of this year. Hedrick says it's been a goal for the couple for the past five or six years.
"Never thought it would happen this soon," he says. "My dad's military, and I remember from being maybe 5 years old him feeding me black coffee at 6 in the morning, so yeah, I'm a coffee person." He acknowledges that, though he worked as a waiter and bartender through high school and college, he lacks any real coffee shop experience. For the day-to-day elements, they've been relying on staff members like manager Joshua Jewell, who also won silver for Best Barista this year. But that doesn't mean the new owners have been slacking and extracting profit. Aside from a full interior remodel of the T-Gap location, Hedrick and Mirenda are opening a second store in the Plaza at Barnes (4307 Integrity Center Point), on the northwest corner of Barnes and Powers.
"We were looking for a second location in the next year or so," says Hedrick. Then, a customer told them about an open kiosk on Powers, while wishing the coffee spot had a location out east. Hedrick checked the place out, then he says, "I left probably 30 voicemails for every phone number I could find associated with that address." Right now, Hedrick and Mirenda are planning to open the space in January.
"There's not a whole lot of local choices over there, and a lot of people like to support local..." he says. "It's a little nerve-wracking, but I'm excited." Of note, both locations will continue to serve coffee from Humble's long-time roasting partner, formerly Firedance Coffee.
Of note, Firedance changed owners and names earlier this year. It's now called Mango Tree Coffee. More on that next week, as the new owners were not available as of press time. Still, Hedrick says the change in ownership hasn't stopped plans for an ambitions custom roast they've been perfecting.
"We're actually working with 291, the distillery, and Mango Tree, and we're working on a bourbon-aged coffee roast for the winter," says Hedrick. "We think it's going to be a really good winter drink with that brown sugar and vanilla [flavor]."
A La Carte
• Say goodbye to Brother Luck Street Eats soon and hello to IV by Brother Luck. Last week, Luck announced that he had leased the restaurant space at 321 N. Tejon St., the soon-to-be-former Coquette's. Luck plans to open IV in April.
• Denver-based fast casual Carve Barbecue has leased two suites in the Lincoln Center complex. The restaurant will be next to Goat Patch Brewing Company. One suite will be a typical restaurant, and the other will serve as a marketplace.