By Cady Inabinett
Montevallo’s new coffeehouse, Strand Coffeehouse, has moved its ribbon cutting date to Feb. 12, according to a sign posted on the business’s doors. The event was previously scheduled to take place on Jan. 29.
Sean Eichelberger, owner of Strand, said the store’s opening had to be delayed because they were unable to get all the required final inspections completed. He added that he was hoping to have everything completed by the week of Jan. 29, but that his plumber’s schedule did not allow for this to happen.
“We are currently waiting on our final plumbing inspection and then the final building inspection to get out certificate of occupancy. Once we gave that, we will be able to get our license with the city and officially open,” Eichelberger said.
The Montevallo Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Adele Nelson also pointed to county trade inspections as the reason for the delay in the store’s grand opening, saying, “Montevallo Chamber moved the ribbon cutting date to Sat Feb 12 to allow time for scheduled inspections to be completed.”
County inspections have previously caused delays in opening for other Montevallo business recently. Soul Spot’s opening last year was continuously delayed from January until September, with county inspections being cited as one of the main causes for those delays.
Eichelberger pointed out that, “The inspections for Montevallo are performed by Shelby County, so they handle quite alot.”
However, Eichelberger was complimentary of Montevallo Chamber of Commerce’s involvement with Strand, saying, “Along with officially hosting the grand opening event and coordinating the attendance of city and local officials, Adele Nelson, the executive director has been a great asset just in terms of introducing me to the larger business community which has already been hugely beneficial as I’ve had to navigate this opening process.”
When asked how the Chamber has assisted the store in its opening process, Nelson replied, “The Montevallo Chamber assists new businesses with information to guide them in the correct direction to accomplish all the proper guidelines to open a business. Then the Montevallo Chamber promotes the new business member with a ribbon cutting, sharing facebook posts and making advertising in the Chamber Chatter available.”
Strand Coffeehouse will be located in the old Strand Movie Theater on Main Street. The store plans to offer a varying menu of coffee from different roasters around the world, as well as bagels, muffins and grab-and-go items. Eichelberger confirmed that the store is planning on accepting Falcon Flex points as a payment method, saying that, “We’re hopeful to actually be able to have that up and running now before opening.”
A Jan. 19 post on Strand’s Facebook page announced that the coffeehouse will be serving Mad Priest Roasters coffee. Mad Priest is a coffee roasting company based in Chattanooga, TN, whose website adversities it makes coffee for, “people who are sick of the bland, corporate, heretical coffee experience.”
Mad Priest is also focused on being, “a sustainable, for-profit business with a triple bottom line that includes social and environmental goals alongside the economic ones.” The company hires resettled refugees and ex-convicts as well as source their coffee from environmentally responsible farms, according to their website.
Strand’s ribbon cutting is now set to take place on Feb. 12 at 10 a.m. Nelson said that the event will feature, not just a ribbon cutting, but also a tour and a coffee sampling.
Eichelberger indicated he hopes to open the store before the ribbon cutting ceremony though, saying, “Our plan is to have our new Grand Opening event on the 12th but we are going to try to be open before that if at all possible.”
Cady Inabinett is the editor in chief of The Alabamian. She’s majoring in English and double-minoring in political science and peace and justice studies. She enjoys reading, watching movies, caring for houseplants and generally just being pretentious in her free time.