Your 30A Wedding Coffee Bar
Sip Sip, HOORAY!
If you haven’t heard of the idea of having a coffee bar at your 30A wedding reception, you aren’t alone! In my five years of experience as a wedding DJ, I was introduced to the concept for the first time last year. And, it is AWESOME! Fortunately, there is a wedding company in the 30A area that specializes in this concept. Meet Donavan and Kasey, the husband and wife owners of Coastal Coffee Bar Company!
Meet Donavan & Kasey
Josh: Let’s start at the beginning. How did you all get into the wedding industry?
Donavan: Well, we’ve been here before, Josh. We owned a photo booth up in Mississippi. After we relocated to the 30A area, I started working locally for a caterer. I noticed there was a need for specialty coffee at weddings. We saw the niche and decided to jump in!
Kasey: We talked about getting back into the wedding industry after running the photo booth business for six years. I asked him if he’d seen good coffee at the weddings he’d worked on 30A and he replied, “No. Maybe an air pot.” We talked to caterers and then Amavida as we were trying to figure out what the company would look like. It ended up being a “right place, right time” kind of thing.
Josh: At the weddings that I’ve been the DJ/MC, I don’t think there’s ever been a coffee bar; not even an air pot. The staff may serve coffee with dessert but that’s about the extent of it. The first time I experienced a coffee bar at a wedding was at Rhoda’s cousin’s wedding in California last year.
Kasey: I get the impression that it’s usually an afterthought. “By the way, do you want to serve coffee with your cake?” It surprised us because coffee is such a huge part of everybody’s everyday life. Coffee shops are busy all day long. People drink coffee all day long. We then thought, “Who wouldn’t want to have a coffee bar at their celebration?”
Why a Coffee Bar For My 30A Wedding?
Josh: Let’s assume a couple has never heard of incorporating a coffee bar for their wedding but now are considering it. What are some reasons they should include it as part of their wedding reception?
Kasey: A lot of the people will come into the reception area before the wedding starts. When they see us setting up and they’re like “Oh, my gosh. We’re so glad you’re here!” The bridal party, especially, has been standing for hours and getting ready. Preparation sometimes starts at 6 o’clock in the morning with getting hair and makeup done. By 5 o’clock or 6 o’clock at night, they really need that pick-me-up.
Donavan: It brings energy to the event. Adding coffee helps everyone to keep it going to have a great party.
Kasey: We love being able to teach guests about the coffee culture. We’re not just sitting there taking orders. Plus, it gives people who aren’t necessarily dancers something to do instead of just sitting and watching what’s going on. It encourages your guests to stick around until later into the night. The extra boost of caffeine might even encourage them to get out there on the dance floor.
One of the surprises we’ve seen at events is that people come up to the bar throughout the night. Because we’re set up as an open bar, guests often try drinks they’ve never had before. It’s a unique experience being able to sample high-quality coffee drinks that you’ve never had before. Your guests also have the option to try a drink they normally wouldn’t. Plus, you can still order the drink you love. For the coffee aficionados, it’s great to be able to have conversations about their favorite coffee, how they roast their own beans, all things coffee!
Another benefit to having a coffee bar at your wedding reception is it provides an alcohol alternative. If guests don’t drink or you’re the designated driver, they now have something to drink besides lemonade or tea. The last thing that’s great about having a coffee bar at your wedding is coffee’s versatility. When it’s cold outside it warms you up, and when it’s hot outside it cools you down. We can provide both iced and hot drinks beverage options year-round.
Josh: It’s also something that can be unique and personal to the bride and groom. I’ve been a wedding DJ for five years and over 60 events and the wedding that I went to with Rhoda was the first time I’d ever seen one. It’s a great way to amp the guest experience up and have something where guests think, “Oh man. I’ve never seen that before!”
Donavan: We want to make sure we help add to the guests’ experience. It’s so cool to be able to share that coffee culture with people at the event. There are also those who are well versed in coffee. We were part of a wedding for a coffee blogger and she wanted to make sure that she had the best coffee. She knew exactly what she wanted. And then we’ve been a part of events where people said, “We just want you there!” because of that unique experience.
Josh: What do you all offer, as far as coffee goes?
Kasey: We use a single-origin espresso from Guatemala that’s locally roasted at Amavida. The roast is delicious with notes of chocolate, almond, and apricot. We will make a point to stick with a single-origin coffee that has chocolate notes in it because typically celebrations are splurging. And what says splurging like chocolate?
Donavan: We try to make sure that everything we have in use is organic. Even all of our cups are compostable. We believe in providing the absolute best quality we can for the bride, the groom, and their guests.
Kasey: All of our syrups are clean. If they’re available in organic, we get it in organic. If they aren’t, we try to avoid syrups that contain high fructose syrup. We offer espressos, cortados (a short latte), lattes, cappuccinos, americanos, and chai tea. That’s our main menu for all of our weddings, parties, and events. Then, we allow them to pick two signature drink options which can be things like white chocolate-lavender lattes which are really delicious. Another signature drink we had was a Nutella cappuccino. Iced caramel macchiatos are extremely popular. So we let them pick the two signature drinks and then we always include vanilla syrup and a milk alternative as standard.
Josh: What are the milk alternatives you offer?
Kasey: When we started, we used almond pretty exclusively and then oat gained a lot of popularity. To be honest, we now bring an oat and an almond. If people ask for a milk alternative we say “Which do you prefer?” That way, if someone has a nut allergy, then we have the oat as an option. If they don’t request a specific milk alternative, we will typically bring oat and almond.
Donavan and Kasey, it was such a pleasure to sit down and chat with you both about Coastal Coffee Bar Company! It’s such a great, unique idea that will help increase the guest experience. If you want to find out more information about how you can incorporate a coffee bar for your 30A wedding, check out their website at coastalcoffeebarco.com, their Instagram, or their Facebook. You can send inquiries directly to their email address. I can’t wait to have the podcast ready and released for everyone to hear the conversation. There was much more from the conversation that I could include in this blog!
Also, if you missed last week’s blog about Wedding Planning During Coronavirus, check it out.
As always, here’s to couples planning their weddings. And here’s to making each one a highlight!