Ruta Maya Closing? Yes, But …
… it may not be, like, a forever thing
By Wayne Alan Brenner, 3:22PM, Mon. Aug. 20, 2012
And it's "only" the coffeehouse at Penn Field on South Congress we're talking about, not the entire Ruta Maya operation.
That longtime importing-and-roasting facility's moved into new digs out on Highway 71, and there'll even be a gorgeous new Ruta Maya cafe in the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport.
And maybe, just maybe, a whole 'nother new freestanding Ruta Maya is gonna open somewhere else in town.
Still, though: Situation sucks, doesn't it?
The expansive and familiar venue on South Congress, besides bringing the city another bastion of delicious caffeine, has been host to all manner of community events – Tuesday Open Mike Poetry, Kids’ Rock School, Salsa lessons and dances, yoga sessions, and more singer-songwriters than you can shake a collection of James Taylor vinyl at.
What's happened – what appears to be happening to other food service venues in quite a few places throughout the city – is that Ruta Maya's been priced out of its sweet location.
"Regrettably," says the company's head honcho Tim Sheehan, "as real estate speculation grows in Austin, so does rent."
Tell us about it, brother. What the hell does it take to survive as a coffee house in Austin these days, anyway? What's it like to try to run such a business?
Actually, as it happens, we've got a blogpost about that very topic coming up on Wednesday, featuring a lengthy, informative, and even illuminating conversation with Tom Gohring of Kick Butt Coffee, Steve & Stephanie Williams of Bennu, and Mark Kamburis, formerly of Flipnotics Coffeespace.
See you back here then, if not before.
PS: In case you're still a bit thirsty for coffee news?
Man, did you miss this whole thing about Casa Brasil's awesome coffee-maven classes?