A little over two years after they opened the doors, the owners of Mentobe Cafe in downtown Farmington will close them Sept. 26.
Partners Kim Chapman and Jackie Mulvihill have already begun saying emotional goodbyes to their customers. They officially launched the coffee shop, with partner Dave Epps, in the newly renovated McNutt building next to the Farmington Civic Theater on June 13, 2011.
Mentobe got a great response to a "soft opening" during Art on the Grand, a downtown Farmington arts festival. The partners were also buoyed by Founders Festival, which draws tens of thousands to people to downtown Farmington in July.
But after that, business slowed. The shop, which offers coffee, flavored teas, soups, sandwiches, frozen yogurt, smoothies and sweets, never got the foot traffic it needed to gain profitability.
"It's been coming for a long time," Mulvihill said. "We thought it would be a little more consistent flow ... We thought Farmington was closer to turning around, but that's not happening yet. I'm not sure that's something we could have known."
Both women agree the best part of their experience has been the people who have supported the business. "They're just so kind and generous," Chapman said. "That's a good thing that's come out of this."
"The customers we've gotten to know are people we would never have gotten to know in our previous lives," Mulvihill said. "It's been fantastic getting to know these people."
The last two special events at Mentobe Cafe next week will be Wednesday Night Sessions with local authors and Songwriters Anonymous, a musician showcase, on Thursday.
What's your favorite memory of Mentobe Cafe? Tell us with a comment.