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RandomGirl's avatar

What would you call a shop like a coffee shop, only without so much coffee?

Asked by RandomGirl (3352 points ) December 8th, 2012

I’m thinking about opening a coffee shop in a couple of years.
After asking this question a couple of days ago, I realized: “coffee shop” isn’t even the right name for it. I thought I had finally nailed down a conventional name for my ideas, but then I remembered something. I don’t like coffee. I love the atmosphere in coffee shops, though. So I need to figure out a name for it. This shop I’m hoping to open will have cookies, muffins, ice cream, and coffee. Maybe some sandwiches/wraps. So what would you call it? Not a coffee shop or a restaurant…. I’m also hoping to cater to a younger crowd (teens) – they’ll be able to do homework, sit & read, maybe use an empty room for tutoring after school.

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30 Answers

jaytkay's avatar

Two quick thoughts off the top of my head, for conversation, I am not saying these are absolutes

1) Call it a cafe

2) Teens don’t have much money, maybe you could aim it at the parents whose teens are getting tutored

Bellatrix's avatar

With the exception of ice cream, we can buy all of those things in most coffee shops here. Most of them serve coffee, tea, cold drinks, shakes and light food. Quiche, sandwiches, wraps etc. Certainly cake and biscuits. Are you thinking of a cafe?

@jaytkay has just posted the same thing. If you are aiming for a younger crowd – college? Uni? School students? Many quite young people may not even like coffee much either. I would look at what else will draw them in – music, films etc. I remember going to a Spanish restaurant in Melbourne that had a big screen with Spanish films being projected onto the screen. It was quite cool.

RandomGirl's avatar

@jaytkay: I’m not in it for the money. I’m in it for the people. I don’t care about making a profit; breaking even is all I care about. And the tutoring is one of many things on the side.
OK, cafe it is.

jaytkay's avatar

@RandomGirl Absolutely, it is great that money is not your primary goal. But somebody has to pay the rent and the electric bill or you fail really quickly. So you have to be mindful of the income and expenses.

Not trying to discourage you. Just trying to give a little guidance. There are a few successful independent coffee shops/cafes in my area, so it can be done.

DO IT!

jerv's avatar

Sounds like either a cafe or a bakery (I have been to bakeries that also had gelato, so ice cream isn’t too big a stretch). As for claims that youth aren’t into coffee, it depends a bit on the age group. I know I used to hang in coffee shops in my mid/late-teens

gailcalled's avatar

Here it is Ralph’s Pretty Good Café,

In addition to a large selection of coffee, tea and other hot drinks, he serves soups, salads, sandwiches, ice cream, muffins, cookies and Mexican food. He works 24/7 and makes a nice living. He exhibits the work of local artists and school children on the walls, has a few tables and chairs outside, has a clean and available bathroom, bulletin board for community events and free newspapers and magazines.

jaytkay's avatar

For some inspiration here are web sites for my favorite coffee places. Red June may be the closest to your idea.

http://ipsento.com/

http://www.redjunecafe.com/

http://brotherskcoffee.com/BROS-K_THE-HOMEPAGE.html

http://www.alchemycoffeehouse.com/

glacial's avatar

A shop.

But seriously… what you are describing is a coffee shop (or cafe), as far as I’m concerned. And I drink a lot of coffee.

jazmina88's avatar

bistro…...diner if you go comfort food

Cafe

LostInParadise's avatar

I like the word salon, in the original sense of the word, but it would probably be interpreted to mean beauty salon.

DaphneT's avatar

It could be called Holly’s Hang-Out, Rachel’s Relax Inn, Suz’s Sippy Saloon, whatever you want to call it. Legally, though you’ll have to meet restaurant, cafe, cafeteria and/or diner requirements for the state in which you establish the business and that may dictate how you classify your shop. Because of movies, television, etc., most people are familiar with the cafe concept, the diner concept, the sandwich shop concept, the coffee shop concept, etc. Around here we have a book shop with a coffee and tea bar. It counts itself as a book shop with a side business of coffee and drinks, but it still has to satisfy the food service regulations.

Good luck with your venture.

mangeons's avatar

My first thought would be to call it a café.

hearkat's avatar

Other options are “bistro” or “patisserie”.

glacial's avatar

@hearkat A bistro is a full-on restaurant, with tablecloths and waiters… and a patisserie sells croissants, pastries, etc. that are baked on site. I don’t think the OP wants to produce that much of her own food.

@RandomGirl Or do you?

hearkat's avatar

@glacial… I know that the literal definitions of those terms are not quite exactly what the OP describes, but I thought I’d introduce other concepts that she might consider in order to distinguish herself from delis and cafés, depending on the market she’s in. Besides, commercial names are pretty fluid here in the US.

Another idea is a luncheonette, if you don’t want to do dinners. Or a “snack shack” or some similar casual terminology that might help to appeal to the younger crowd.

laureth's avatar

Café, bakery, or perhaps a Tea House. We have a tea house in my area.

gailcalled's avatar

One last thought about Ralph’s Café. It seats 20 comfortably and a few more at the counter. He serves breakfast and lunch only and closes around 4:00PM.

ucme's avatar

Has Beans.

harple's avatar

We have Tea Rooms here, but I like the Deli/Bistro options for sounding trendier to youth.

ucme's avatar

How about De-cafe?
For that continental feel, merry charisma!

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RandomGirl's avatar

@gailcalled: I wish I had a place like Ralph’s around here! I spend about 2 hours a week killing time downtown and our one coffee shop just closed because of a bad landlord. :(
Wow guys, thanks so much for all your answers! I’m going with calling it a cafe. I need to figure out how to make that accent mark on my laptop without key codes! Now, for a name… That’ll come eventually.

gailcalled's avatar

@RandomGirl: Some people spend so much time at Ralph’s that they ought to be paying rent. FWIW, he doesn’t have WiFi and encourages people to take phone calls outside.

I am eating a Ralph’s speciality now that I brought home. A naked burrito (no wrap) with no guacamole, no sour cream, extra salsa and half the amount of cheese.

If you have a Mac, I can give you the Mac tips for diacritical marks. PM Me.

gailcalled's avatar

^^^OK. No tips.

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