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Austin Chase Coffee thrives in Silverdale
Austin Chase Coffee has a special place in the hearts of Nick Sinaly and Cynthia Louden.
"This is actually where we had our first date," Louden said.
The husband and wife team bought Austin Chase Coffee, located at 9621 Mickelberry Road in Silverdale, in February and customers seem to like the place.
"A lot of new faces, a lot of good feedback, a lot of old customers are coming back," Sinaly said.
He and Louden had no prior food service experience, but they've been longtime Austin Chase customers.
Sinaly co-owns Kitsap Office Furniture in Silverdale and Louden works at an engineering firm, but the Poulsbo couple knew they had to buy Austin Chase when the opportunity arose.
"All of the doors were opening and we had to go through," Louden said.
Since purchasing Austin Chase Coffee, Sinaly and Louden hired eight new employees, including barista Eric Petty.
Petty joined Austin Chase six weeks ago after spending six years at Starbucks Coffee. He said he loves working at Austin Chase because it's a much more relaxing environment and enjoys getting to know customers and their drinks of choice.
Louden said she's impressed when she comes into Austin Chase Coffee because the baristas are talking to customers and really getting to know each person who walks in.
"Customer service really has to be ace, it has to be," she said. "We really want people to come in and not be our customer, but our guest."
Austin Chase Coffee still serves the same coffee and smoothie drinks, but Sinaly and Louden now offer a wider variety of pastries, vegan cookies, soft serve ice cream and cheesecake with a choice of topping. Austin Chase baristas now serve low-calorie, non-fat, blended drinks called Yoguccinos.
"We're all about options here," Petty said.
Austin Chase Coffee has indoor and outdoor seating as well as free and easy-to-access wireless Internet connection.
Louden said she and Sinaly plan to expand the menu and offerings in the future.
Despite the tough economic times, Louden and Sinaly say they're happy to be local business owners and do their part to boost the local economy.
"This was an opportunity for us to be involved in the community on a day-to-day basis and we look forward to supporting the local economy," Louden said.