Business

The Veronica teams up with Huxdotter to offer one-stop wine/coffee combo

NORTH BEND - At long last Huxdotter coffee fans can enjoy their drinks without steering.

Earlier this month the North Bend staple opened an espresso bar inside The Veronica on North Bend Way. From 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Huxdotter serves up a full range of espresso drinks, and at 5 p.m. The Veronica begins serving wine. The unlikely marriage seems to work in the more feminine venue tossed with throw pillows, candles and sheer drapes.

Owner Tanya Boyle has been running the Huxdotter drive-through on West Park Street in North Bend for 2 1/2 years and has a faithful bevy of nine female employees, some of whom have been with Huxdotter for many years prior to Boyle's ownership.

Despite rumors, Boyle has no plans to close down the drive-through, which is still going strong. The Veronica location is just an expansion and an opportunity for her customers to enjoy their drinks in a space a little more sumptuous than their cars.

Boyle, a Valley resident of 26 years, said she loves being a business owner in the Valley because her customers are very loyal.

"It's a small business, but I have a huge following. My employees are probably my biggest [asset]. They've all stayed with me since I bought the place. I think customers like to see the same faces every day. They're always smiling, always happy. I think that's a huge part of it."

Huxdotter patrons can now pick up a breakfast sandwich, gourmet pastry or lunch sandwich to accompany their coffee. Boyle gets her sandwiches, pastries and quiches premade from a bakery in Seattle, but said that as The Veronica location gains popularity, she may expand the kitchen to craft her own delights. A breakfast sandwich favorite is the ham and cheese with pesto on a roll. Popular lunch sandwiches include the turkey and cheese croissant, and the ham and cheese broccoli croissant. The Veronica is also a Wi-Fi (wireless Internet access) hot spot, so if you don't have to hit the road, enjoy your coffee and pastry while you work.

Huxdotter will continue serving up the same Endicott coffee that keeps the drive-through buzzing along. At The Veronica, customers can pick up one-pound and half-pound bags of Endicott coffee beans to brew at home.

"I don't know if people have figured out that we're the same place," said Boyle, who is hoping her loyal fan base at the drive-through will find their way to The Veronica. She's also targeting nearby businesses that might like to meet with clients over coffee.

"I want businesses to know this is a great place to bring clients," Boyle said. "I can have coffee and muffins ready for them."

Running two coffee shops has actually been pretty convenient for Boyle, so far. Since the two are almost a stone's throw apart, she can quickly run from one location to the other if needed. "So it's been easy to do both, but once [the new one] picks up, it might be more difficult. But being busy is what I love."

Currently, art by local artist Richard Burhans lines the walls and is for sale, and Boyle said live music from local musicians may also be in The Veronica/Huxdotter future.

"It's just a nice, casual place to meet people and sit and have coffee."

* Huxdotter inside The Veronica is open seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. and is located at 228 W. North Bend Way, North Bend. Call (425) 890-0450 for information.

Staff writer Melissa Kruse can be contacted at (425) 888-2311 or by e-mail at melissa.kruse@valleyrecord.com.

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