As a church coffee shop, Higher Groundz Coffee & Tea in Maryland Heights, Missouri has a unique mission: refresh the community, body and spirit.
Built in the basement of Zion Lutheran Church at 12075 Dorsett Road, the new coffee shop held its grand opening August 4.
“We’ve been here for 150 years and are still finding ways to build bridges throughout our community,” said Pastor Mark Femmel.
“What better way than through coffee and tea, which reach every corner and level of society?”
Converting the Church Basement to a Coffee Shop
To convert its basement into a state-of-the-art coffee shop, the church turned to Crimson Cup and our 7 Steps to Success coffee shop franchise alternative.
“We’re excited to welcome Pastor Femmel and Zion Lutheran Church as 7 Steps customers,” said Founder and President Greg Ubert.
“Giving back is one of our core values here at Crimson Cup, and we consider it an honor to help create coffee shops focused on the community.”
Since 1991, Crimson Cup has helped hundreds of entrepreneurs, churches and nonprofits in 30 states open thriving coffee houses.
We help owners put their stamp on independent businesses that reflect the needs of their local community.
Pastor Mark said he learned about Crimson Cup through another successful customer: Germania Brew Haus in Alton, Illinois.
Germania opened in 2017 through our 7 Steps consulting program.
Based on Greg’s book, Seven Steps to Success: A Common-Sense Guide to Succeed in Specialty Coffee, the 7 Steps program teaches everything needed to run a profitable coffee business.
Working with 7 Steps Trainer Steve Bayless, the church invested $750,000 to create a spacious and inviting space for a state-of-the-art coffee house in the historic building’s basement.
Learning the Coffee Business from the Grounds Up
By following the 7 Steps, Pastor Mark and his team learned the coffee business from the grounds up.
“Taken together, all 7 Steps are a great system, but we really appreciated the equipment guidance in Step 3,” he said. “We would have had no idea what to buy. There are so many available.”
When asked what advice he would give to prospective coffee shop owners, he said, “Connect with Crimson Cup and follow the plan!”
Inside Higher Groundz
Higher Groundz customers choose from a full menu of hot and cold specialty coffee drinks, including handcrafted espressos, lattes, cappuccinos and mochas, plus frozen smoothies, hot chocolate and premium hot and iced teas. Locally baked goodies round out the menu.
Pastor Mark said customers are impressed with the taste and quality of the award-winning coffee and espresso-based drinks.
“We’ve converted black coffee drinkers to raspberry mocha drinkers by asking if they like coffee and desserts,” he said. “If you’re willing to pay $5 for a dessert at a restaurant, why not a dessert in a cup that you can sip for an hour?”
Just a few weeks since opening, the church coffee shop is attracting regular customers – and rave reviews. “My family and I come here almost every day,” said one Google viewer. “The coffee is the best coffee we have ever had…”
“Our purpose is to delight and to inspire you for whatever challenges you will face today,” Pastor Mark said. “We’re on a mission to reach out beyond coffee and tea to those looking for a place to call home.”
An Invitation to Experience Higher Groundz
“If you’re in the Maryland Heights area, we invite you to experience the vibe of our brand new coffee shop!” he added. “In a world that has lost its appreciation for the uniqueness of each individual, we offer a unique location and unique approach because everyone who enters our doors is unique.”