Vanguard students who frequent the local coffee shop Coffee Nature have seen the “public notice of application to sell alcoholic beverages” sign hanging in the location’s window. However, the decision to sell alcohol is will not affect the day-to-day dealings of Coffee Nature. In fact, the shop is planning to move into a new space, and the application will apply to the new business.
The owners, Jenny Preechatiwong and Dale Thawornjaroen, along with their business partner Andrew Singh, plan to relocate the Coffee Nature shop to a new unit in the same plaza a few doors down from where it currently resides. Moving the shop to a new space will allow the owners to use the current space to open a fully operative kitchen because there are gas and water lines readily available for use.
An entirely new restaurant, Liquid Bread, will be opening in Coffee Nature’s space that will have alcoholic beverages as a part of the drink options on the menu, according to the manager Kyle Weik.
The application to sell alcoholic beverages has to be posted in Coffee Nature’s space because that is where the new restaurant that will be selling the alcohol will reside.
“It is easier to obtain a liquor license for the space that you know will be selling alcohol and transfer it to a different business than it is to transfer a liquor license to an entirely new space,” Preechatiwong said.
The new restaurant will consist of a Thai/Asian cuisine and a variety of different beers for guests to choose from; however, alcohol will not be the central theme.
“We want our customers to think of our new restaurant as a food place that serves beer just like any other restaurant,” said Thawornjaroen. “Ultimately the power is up to the guest–if they don’t like alcohol then they don’t have to order it. We are not forcing anyone to order alcoholic drinks in order to dine there.”
As a business team, Preechatiwong, Thawornjaroen, and Singh have expressed their commitment to the community’s wants and needs. They are grateful their coffee shop can provide a common ground for people to come study, work, or just enjoy a fresh cup of coffee.
“We want to make sure that this community in Costa Mesa stays as a whole community,” Preechatiwong said.
During the transition period of Coffee Nature’s relocation and subsequent opening of Liquid Bread, there may be a short period of time where there will be alcohol sold within the coffee shop’s confines, but they plan to keep the alcoholic beverages and the coffee shop entirely separate by selling alcohol after 7 p.m., according to Thawornjaroen.
This setup will be temporary until Coffee Nature is settled into their new space and the restaurant is opened as a new entity.
So, for Vanguard students that are worried that Coffee Nature’s inquiry into obtaining a license to sell alcoholic beverages will have a negative effect on their experience on a dry campus, this will not be the case.
“Seeing the license to sell alcohol in the window made me feel a little uneasy. My first thought was that I would be having to deal with the commotion of alcoholic activities around me while I am trying to study,” senior Hayley Normoyle said.
Another change for Coffee Nature is its hours of operation. In order to accommodate the needs of their guests, the owners extended the hours from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. last week. The newest location will have a larger space that allows a comfortable fit for more guests. This may also allow the possibility of open mic and study nights.