WHAT’S IT LIKE TO RUN THE FIRST-EVER SUP-COFFEE SHOP? THE OWNERS OF WATERMAN’S LANDING FILL US IN. By: SUP Magazine
Jay Wild and Ron Ayers love to standup paddle.
They also love coffee. Oh, and they're really into Wi-Fi and late-night, caffeine-fueled social debates. So, seven years ago, they opened up Waterman's Landing—an SUP coffee shop on the northwest, California shore of Lake Tahoe. Waterman's has since become a hub of all things paddling—and they brew a mean latte. But mixing SUP and java can get complicated. Here are three things the team at Waterman’s Landing was pretty sure you hadn't considered about the business:
1. You need to be able to make a double macchiato while talking about organic, fair-trade, single-origin, locally roasted beans one minute, then hop over the counter onto the showroom floor and explain Quickblade’s Shaft Stiffness Index, then back over the counter to make sure the scones aren’t burning, or to cook a hot waffle-and-ice-cream sandwich, all while answering the question, 'So, what’s your opinion on drafting?'
2. The shop has become a brick and mortar social network for the sport here in Tahoe. So you have to know how to convert the whole place into a disco when visiting racers and paddlers turn a mellow barbecue into a full-blown dance party. And yes, it's happened more than once.
3. Here's the ultimate challenge: finding and training a summertime staff that has a passion for standup paddling, understands the products and has food service experience, but doesn't want to run off to every SUP race in the area.