Pulling up to South Bay Coffee Company 2 on the main drag in Aberdeen, it may look like your typical drive-thru coffee stand. However, owner Stephanie Childers shares they are anything but ordinary. Starting with their signature coffee blend, made just for them by Firefly Coffee Roasters, South Bay is all about quality.
And that’s just the beginning. “I don’t feel like many people compete with my product quality, starting with the amount of training we provide our baristas. We’re a drive-thru, but we are anything but that. We put out a product that you can find at a sit down cafe where there is more time, but we do it fast and include the love,” Stephanie explains.
That love begins with carefully selected ingredients. There’s no canned whipped cream here, it’s made from scratch. And your pumpkin pie latte won’t be flavored with syrup, instead Stephanie purchases a special sauce, made locally, to flavor this festive drink. South Bay’s fall menu is bursting with options that go beyond coffee, too. Guests can choose real eggnog for coffee drinks, pumpkin pastries, fresh apple cider and a whole lot more. It’s all part of the experience Stephanie says she wants to create. “You’re spending good money on something that you enjoy, often every single day, so why not have the finest ingredients in it? It just tastes better, quality is so important.”
That level of care continues with Stephanie’s employees. Each barista completes a three-week training program she designed herself. Consistently making great tasting coffee is the main goal and without an automated machine, it’s a precision task. Stephanie knows consistency is key and educates her staff to create the best possible product. “Not only are our baristas getting training with the owner and lead barista, they also get hands-on experience with the coffee roaster himself,” says Stephanie. “He brings more information and understanding to the process that enhances the training process.”
You don’t need to be an experienced coffee barista to join the South Bay crew, Stephanie says. “We look for super-friendly people with good customer service who can multi-task really well and are eager to learn. I love to hire people that have no experience.” She knows that her training program can have them crafting the quality beverages South Bay Coffee Company 2 is known for in short order.
After completing their extensive training, South Bay Coffee Company baristas are some of the best in their field and it shows. With repeat customers every day, some who venture into Aberdeen from other areas of the county, South Bay Coffee Company 2 is quickly becoming a destination caffeine stop and favorite among locals. Which is exactly what Stephanie has always hoped for.
“Coffee is like a fine wine,” she explains, “and there’s several different kinds. When people say, ‘oh it’s just coffee’, it just kills me! Coffee is not just coffee it is so much more. We put so much love into it from roaster to cup, nothing is left out. By purchasing your coffee at South Bay Coffee Company, you’re supporting us and all our families. We are small and the money goes right back into the community – to the people who live and work right here in the Harbor.”
Support your local high school during happy hour at South Bay Coffee 3:00 p.m.-6:00 p.m. now through September 13. Purchase a 16-ounce mocha or apple cider and a portion of the purchase will be donated.
Follow South Bay Coffee Company on Facebook to keep up on all their future specials.