Java jones quenched

SNOQUALMIE - What better way to initiate the new retail center in Snoqualmie than with the opening of a coffee shop?

Bibo Coffee will be the first business to open in the Key Bank building at the Snoqualmie Ridge retail center located at the intersection of Snoqualmie Parkway and Center Boulevard.

"They [residents] can expect a community coffee shop," said Brandon Kuvara, president of Kirkland-based Northwest Coffee Partners, the owner of Bibo Coffee. "We want it to be a place where you can meet your friends and neighbors." He added the shop is slated for a July 2 opening.

Kuvara described Bibo Coffee, his first foray into the coffee business, as a place where the community in Snoqualmie can come, relax and enjoy a cup of coffee.

He said he looks forward to the shop being orientated to the community and said the small-town feel of Snoqualmie was the primary draw for Bibo Coffee. He had planned to locate the business in another town, but changed his mind as soon as he saw the space at the Ridge.

"When we found out about the space, we knew we had to be there," Kuvara said.

The coffeehouse is 1,362 square foot with 32-foot-high ceilings and bay windows that face Center Boulevard. Kuvara said he and his partners hired an interior decorator to design the shop to be cozy and inviting.

"'Warm' would be a good word to describe it," Kuvara said.

The coffee itself is free trade, shade-grown organic coffee that Bibo will have roasted especially for the shop. There will be house, decaffeinated, dark and Kona blends, and Kuvara said Bibo Coffee plans to sell the coffee by the bag as well.

Although Bibo Coffee will face competition from numerous local coffee shops in North Bend and Snoqualmie, Kuvara believes his business will serve a niche in the community that has been wanting a good, sit-down coffee shop.

"... Ours is such a different atmosphere. The overall product will be better," he said.

In addition to java, Bibo Coffee will serve deserts, biscotti and fresh-baked pastries.

"We kind of went overboard with all the food," Kuvara said.

Northwest Coffee Partners was formed when Kuvara and an old friend from Kent met up after he spent some time out of state on other business ventures. They both realized they were not doing what they wanted to do and decided to form their own coffee company.

"It's a small industry that is a lot of fun," Kuvara said. "When we pulled back from what we were doing, we said, 'That's the kind of business we want.'"

Bibo Coffee will be joined by seven other tenants of the Key Bank building, including Key Bank, Andre's Cleaners, Ichiban Teriyaki, Mail Boxes Etc., Georgio's Subs, Chiropractic Care at the Ridge and Snoqualmie Florist and Gifts. Construction on the second retail building, located next to the Key Bank building, has begun and is scheduled to open in December.

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