The area of downtown Bloomington near North College Ave. is kind of like a coffee wasteland, Crumble Coffee & Bakery owner Laura Noell said. After observing this lack of coffee shops, she and co-owner Scott Reynolds said they decided to open up another shop in that area.
“I think a coffee shop has a unique opportunity to be a community gathering place, and we saw a need for that in this location,” she said.
Crumble Coffee & Bakery opened a second coffee shop Jan. 11 at 532 N. College Ave. Its first location is at 1567 South Piazza Drive in Bloomington.
The shop sells specialty coffees from the local Quarrymen Coffee Roasting Company and organic tea from a business in Kansas called the Hugo Tea Company.
Except for the puff pastry, all of its baked goods are made in the store every day, head baker and manager Noell said.
This focus on fresh baked goods sets Crumble Coffee apart from many coffee shops, Reynolds said.
Crumble Coffee has options like muffins, scones, brownies, crumble bars and cookies.
The shop always has at least one savory option, including quiches, Noell said. It also has at least one gluten free option every day. The bakery changes up their recipes for items like muffins and scones, but it also has standards like chocolate chip cookies and Almond Joy cookies.
Noell said the coffee shop provides a warm and welcoming atmosphere with its decorations and tones of copper, green and wood.
Customer Theresa DeBuhr, 33, purchased a cup of drip coffee and a cranberry-rosemary scone Monday. She said it was her first time at the coffee shop.
“They had great coffee, so I’ll probably come back and try one of their specialty drinks at some point,” she said.
The coffee shop’s decorations matched her style and interests, she said. The walls are adorned with pictures related to astronomy, a bookshelf holds science-fiction novels, and numerous succulent plants are placed around the shop.
“It’s as if my husband and I had been asked to decorate a coffee shop,” DeBuhr said. “I love succulents. I love cacti. We both love space and astronomy and science fiction, especially old science fiction. They kind of hit all the points.”
DeBuhr said she also likes the amount of seating in the coffee shop, which seats up to 54 people. It is a place she could sit and work at her laptop for a long period of time without feeling pressured to leave, she said.
“It sometimes is hard to find a coffee shop that feels like a coffee shop,” she said. “This feels like a nice space to be in and has an, ‘I could work here for a while,’ vibe.”
First-year medical student Ben Bacon has already been to the downtown Crumble Coffee six or seven times. It is the perfect place to study, he said.
Before it opened in the new location, he said he had heard positive remarks about the original coffee shop, so he decided to try it out when the new shop opened.
“I have tried the coffee, the tea and the espresso,” Bacon said. “It’s all been great so far.”
The location of this new coffee shop provides a way to connect IU students with Bloomington locals because it is close to apartments and businesses downtown, Reynolds said.
“It’s really just about people mingling,” he said. “Even if they don’t know each other, they are encountering each other, which is really cool”
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