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Why don't you have seats?

Why don't you have seats?

A question we receive all the time. I'd like to take you back to the summer of 2019. Sabbath did, in fact, have seats. I know you're thinking to yourself, "Trevor, Sabbath didn't open until 2020. What do you mean?"

Thanks for asking, here's my story.

When we started designing and tearing up the concrete in our beautiful 100 year-old retail building, it had seats in the plan. In fact, as we were about to start framing the build out, it had a total of 30 seats and four booths. All while fitting a 15kg roaster, a full bar, and a three compartment sink. For those of you who have visited our space, are probably trying to calculate ate things in your brain, and it doesn't add up. Well you're correct. It won't add up in 720 square feet of space.

I was at my day job when my phone went off, it was the contractor. He says, "Trevor, you should come to the site and bring the architects."

A meeting was held as tape measures were following the current floor plan. A surprise, the architects added an extra 15ft or so to the front of the building and to the width. Making our space massive! Our space isn't massive.

I thought to myself, "Don't panic. Now is not the time." A decision was made and over Thanksgiving of 2019, I redrew the whole building in Google SketchUp, with the help of my cousin, and designed the general layout of what we now know as Sabbath 1.0. This time, there were no seats. Seats could never work if we wanted any type of functional roastery. To be honest, I was terrified. This was everything I never thought Sabbath would be. A to-go cafe? How could we offer rest? How could we instill a pause in people's lives?

Enter the to-go window. A suggestion was brought to us by the building owner, to put a window in on the alley side. Miranda was so excited. She loved the idea. I did not. I couldn't see the pathway to the hospitality I wanted Sabbath to be known for. Though soon, it would all change.

A to-go window and a green leaf wall later (two arguments I lost on, thank the lord), we are now in March 2020. The goal of opening the roastery in the fall and to slowly build revenue until I could leave my job to run the cafe, changed, as the world did. 

Miranda and I were laid off a few days after everything went into lockdown for COVID. We were scared. Not knowing when we would get our jobs back, we decided it was now or never. We had two kids, a dream, and a life to pursue. Construction started and finished around September 2020. With lockdowns and COVID still very much around, opening neared and I saw the vision for Sabbath. I saw what we were meant to do. It was the same thing we designed it for back in 2015, to offer rest.

As our opening neared, I wrote a phrase down and I have said it to every team member we have hired since that day. 

I could be this person's only human interaction for the day, so let's make it freaking special.

Since day one, our Sabbath crew has lived this out. Not in a fake, corporate fashion, but in a genuine way. We love coffee, and desire to serve an incredible experience to make someone's day better. Sabbath is hospitality. Our bar is our dinner table, and everyone is welcome to pull up a chair at the feast.

I still get fired up. Four years later thinking about that phrase. I hope whether you have ventured into our cafe, or purchased something online, you have felt special. Because you are.