The new place to be is Honu Coffee. The coffee shop on Lyons Street has been a huge hit with the students of The Master’s College and has become the cool new place to go. It has all the essentials for a college student; first rate coffee, a special place to do homework and, of course, free Wi-Fi.
The owners of the store are John and Darla Evarts who opened the store for the first time on Oct 17, and the coffee house started bringing in customers right away.
“The number of people who came in was surprisingly good,” John Evarts said. Students from TMC have been a big source for the upstarting coffee house, but even more so, the neighborhood has been the reason the store has had such a great start.
The Evarts saw a need for a good quality coffee house in the Santa Clarita area, and when an opportunity arose that could allow them to do just that, they decided to make a dream a reality. John Evarts dreamt of owning his own coffee shop since he was in high school, but had never been able to make that a realty, because as John said, “life just happened.”
It was about two years ago when the Evarts first saw an opportunity to open a coffee shop, but originally the opportunity was on the island of Kauai. They moved to the island to try to start their business, but for various reasons they were unable to get the store open. When they moved back to California, they found the opportunity to open in Santa Clarita.
“There are some really good coffee shops in California, but none in Santa Clarita,” Evarts said, “There is a need for a coffee shop in this part of town.”
Evarts has finally achieved the dream of running his own coffee shop, and has been tailoring it to fit the exact environment he wants.
“That was what we did in high school” Evarts said. “We went [to coffee shops] to hang out.”
Many students from TMC feel the same way. Tiffany Lehman, a senior business major, said, “I like it because it has a distinctly different atmosphere than Starbucks. It’s not somewhere you go because you need a coffee fix, it’s a place you go to sit and stay awhile.”
That is the feel that Evarts wanted to achieve for Honu Coffee, and one of the ways he did it was by the loft. Above the main entrance into the shop, there is a loft where customers can go to relax on couches, or set up at a table, and hook into the Wi-Fi, all the while enjoying a quality cup of coffee.
“Our coffee sets us apart from the coffee chains in this area. We see it in our customers’ faces,” Evarts said.
One of their most popular drinks to date is their cold brew. To make this coffee, the coffee is ground to a very specific coarseness, then is left to sit in cold water for 14 –18 hours. The resulting brew is a coffee that is neither bitter nor acidic, which makes it perfect for the shop’s assorted flavors of blended drinks.
The coffee shop has more than just coffee however. There is also an unusual beverage that Evarts is trying to get to become more popular. The Jaws. This drink, not known to many people, is a made by pouring a neutral flavored energy drink over ice, and mixing in the flavor of your choice. It’s a good option for non-coffee drinkers who still want a jolt of caffeine.
The Evarts are continuing to watch their new business grow, and have a few hopeful plans for the future. Ideally they want to be able to have live music in the shop at least once a week, simply to make the whole experience more enjoyable. And rest assured that if the Evarts get their way, they will continue to sell good coffee and great atmosphere to the people of Santa Clarita for a good long while.
By Bethany Garber