We Helped Fifteen Independent Coffee Shops in Nine States Open in 2023

February 29, 2024 (Published: January 7, 2024)
Ribbon cutting at Court Street Coffee State Street in Athens, Ohio
Owner Syndi Smith (left) and Barista at Neon Bean Coffee in Cedar Creek, Texas.
Owner Syndi Smith (left) and Barista at Neon Bean Coffee in Cedar Creek, Texas.

In 2023, we were proud to help 15 entrepreneurs in nine states achieve their dreams of owning independent coffee shops!

The new and expanded businesses joined hundreds of coffee shops in 30 states that receive award-winning coffee, industry-leading coffee shop supplies, hands-on training and ongoing business support through our 7 Steps to Success consulting program.

“We salute the entrepreneurs who are now living the dream of owning independent coffee shops serving their communities,” said Founder and President Greg Ubert. “Our team of coffee business consultants looks forward to helping them build their businesses in the coming years.”

Based on Greg’s Book, Seven Steps to Success: a Commonsense Guide to Succeed in Specialty Coffee, the 7 Steps to Success program has helped hundreds of independent coffee shops across the U.S. become thriving businesses.

Their owners – most with little or no coffee or restaurant experience – learned how to open a coffee shop through the 7 Steps program.

Our 7 Steps coffee shop startup consulting team guides new owners through every step – from scouting a profitable location and writing a coffee shop business plan to planning a menu, choosing equipment, hiring staff and providing comprehensive training.


Welcome to the Crimson Cup Class of 2023!

Owners and team at Walnut Street Coffee and Deli in Oskaloosa Kansas.
Owners and team at Walnut Street Coffee and Deli in Oskaloosa Kansas.

The 15 new shops that opened in 2023 include:

  • Black Hawk Coffee Co., Oakland, Maryland
  • Broken Mug Downtown, Columbus, Nebraska
  • Brown Bear Coffee & Cafe, Fayetteville, Ohio
  • Central Pike Coffee Co., Zanesville, Ohio
  • Coffee Hound Junction in Bentonville, Arkansas
  • Court Street on State, Athens, Ohio
  • Cpl Ray’s Midkiff, Midland, Texas
  • Crazy Llama Coffee, Joplin, Missouri
  • Kat’s Coffeehouse, Gibsonia, Pennsylvania
  • Lock 4 (2nd Location), Waterford, Ohio
  • Neon Bean Coffee, Red Rock, Texas
  • Riesbeck’s Coffee Bar, Cambridge, Ohio
  • Timber Creek Coffee Co., Richland, Pennsylvania
  • Trek Coffee Co., Bowling Green, Kentucky
  • Walnut Street Coffee and Deli in Oskaloosa, Kansas


As a one-stop shop for independent coffee shops, Crimson Cup also provides award-winning coffee, the best coffee shop products in the business, and ongoing support to help coffee businesses thrive.

In fact, five of the new coffee shops belong to owners who opened existing locations with our help:

Ribbon cutting at Court Street Coffee State Street in Athens, Ohio
Ribbon cutting at Court Street Coffee on State Street

– The Broken Mug in Columbus, Nebraska added a second location, The Downtown Mug

– Court Street Coffee in Athens, Ohio expanded to a third location, Court Street on State.

– Cpl Ray’s Coffee in Andrews and Odessa, Texas added a third coffee shop in Midland, Texas,

– Crazy Llama Coffee in Webb City, Missouri expanded to a second location in Joplin, Missouri

– Lock No. 4 Coffee in Beverly, Ohio, added a second coffee shop in Waterford, Ohio.

Most of the owners had little or no experience in specialty coffee. Some said they would not have been able to open without our help.

Cpl. Ray’s Coffee Expands to Third Location

Jerry and Lonna Bevel started the first Cpl. Ray’s Coffee as a tribute to their son, Corporal Ray Bevel.

The Bevels lost Ray in 2007 during his second tour in Iraq. The overwhelming support from their small hometown of Andrews, Texas inspired their desire to give back.

They decided to open a coffee shop to enrich the town but had no idea where to start. They turned to Crimson Cup for training, coffee, equipment, supplies and overall support.

New Corporal Ray's Coffee“Crimson Cup’s got a great product,” Jerry Bevel said. “The customer support – product support, technical support – that they give is just unparalleled.”

Crimson Cup’s 7 Steps to Success team trained Jerry, Lonna and their daughter Keisha Arnold to open the first Cpl. Rays in Andrews, Texas in 2007.

After they opened their first shop, the Bevels received ongoing support to help them grow.

“Crimson Cup is just a one-stop shop,” Jerry Bevel said. They want you to succeed, and they’re going to do everything they can to help you succeed.”

In 2015, the couple opened a second Cpl. Ray’s Coffee in Odessa, Texas. And in May 2023, they opened a third location in Midland, Texas.

Jerry Bevel cited the quality of the coffee – roasted by Crimson Cup –  as a factor in their success. “We provide the kind of experience and high-end coffee you see in Seattle and New York City coffee houses.”

Looking to Open a Coffee Shop? Contact the Coffee Business Experts at Crimson Cup

Interior of CRIMSONGreg said that operating five Crimson Cup Coffee Shops and a retail store, CRIMSON, helps the company test drink recipes and promotional ideas.

“As coffee shop owners and managers ourselves, we’re uniquely positioned to help independent business owners turn their hard work into profitable businesses,” he said.

He invited entrepreneurs considering opening a coffee shop in any state to call Crimson Cup for guidance.“If you encounter any roadblocks or want to discuss your dream with a coffee expert, call us!”

7 Steps Sales Leader Scott Fullerton is the initial contact for all aspiring coffee shop owners. Reach him via email at sfullerton@crimsoncup.com or by calling 1.888.800.9224.

“If you’ve ever dreamed about opening a coffeehouse, I’d love to help you get started,” Scott said. “We’ve helped hundreds of entrepreneurs leap from dreaming about a coffee shop to opening their doors. Chances are, we can help you!”

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