By Jessica Borders
Times West Virginian
Drinking coffee is a big tradition for Jennifer Beach and her family.
On April 6, Jennifer officially opened her business, Beach Coffee Co., at 200 Buffalo St., in Mannington. It’s located beside Country Prim & Folksy in the building that formerly housed Once Upon A Tea Room.
The shop’s fresh-roasted coffee comes from Crimson Cup, a company out of Columbus, Ohio.
“It’s really delicious, not bitter coffee,” Jennifer said.
Beach Coffee Co. sells the coffee beans retail and also uses them to make its specialty coffee drinks and frozen drinks. The store offers “good old-fashioned” coffee, lattes, cappuccinos, hot tea, iced tea, iced espressos and smoothies. Customers can try Shawnda’s Espresso Float, which has Breyers vanilla bean ice cream, espresso and whipped cream.
The store features pastries that are baked fresh every day by Jennifer’s mom, Jane Beach, and a variety of sandwiches and salads.
“I tried to get sandwiches that nobody else around here offers or even knows what they are,” Jennifer said. “They’re all things that I’ve eaten other places when I traveled and just loved.”
For instance, Jennifer ate the traditional Cuban sandwich a lot when she lived in Florida. For this tangy menu item, pulled pork is roasted in a mixture of orange, lemon and lime juices; onions, garlic, oregano, Swiss cheese, ham, pickles and mustard are added; and the sandwich is pressed in the panini machine.
During the time she resided in Louisiana, Jennifer became a fan of the New Orleans muffuletta. This sandwich, also pressed in a panini press, includes ham, capicola, salami, pepperoni, Swiss and provolone cheeses, and an olive tapenade on Cuban bread.
Jennifer did research and learned how to make her favorite sandwiches, and also uses some of her own recipes. Customers can enjoy barbecue pulled pork, made from Jennifer’s personal recipe, as well as reubens, quesadillas and curried chicken salad.
This area is home to Jennifer, who grew up in Wadestown near Mannington. She said opening her own business had been her dream for about 20 years. She earned her regents bachelor of arts degree with a concentration in business from West Virginia University at Parkersburg, saved her money and did research.
Most of Jennifer’s work experience through the years has been in sales.
When she moved back to Mannington three years ago, she was finally financially able to open a shop and looked at what the city needed. She saw that Mannington needed a coffee place.
Jennifer also go involved with Mannington Main Street. She helped choose new businesses that would succeed in a business incubator in town, and this encouraged her to move forward with her own business plans.
Her mother, Jane, also returned to Mannington from Florida, and other family came back to the area from various places around the country as well.
“It was just home,” Jane said of Mannington. “The best people in the world are here.”
Jennifer laughed about her family’s long-standing coffee habit.
“We love coffee around here,” Jennifer said.
She told a story of how her grandpa, who was a coal miner, came home upset with her grandma one night because of the amount of money spent on coffee at the company store. Her grandma told her grandpa that the family had only gone through 15 pounds of coffee that week.
Many of the grandkids got their first taste of the hot beverage as toddlers, taking sips of their grandpa’s coffee from a saucer.
Jennifer said her big family has been tremendously helpful with Beach Coffee Co,, from the decorating and menu to all aspects of the business. Jennifer plans to soon hire a couple of her friends whom she worked with in the past.
Business at the shop has been great and has gone above and beyond Jennifer’s hopes. The venue already has many regular customers.
“It’s been better than I could have ever expected,” she said.
Although some days have been pretty long, she enjoys running the store and wakes up every morning ready to come in. Jennifer said it’s fun getting to talk to different people every day.
“I love it,” she said. “It’s been really nice.”
Beach Coffee Co. is open 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday. For more information, call 304-986-7025, visit the business online at www.beachcoffeecompany.com or on Facebook, or follow the shop on Twitter.
Email Jessica Borders at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow her on Twitter @JBordersTWV.