By Bailey Loosemore – Courier-Journal
Sep 2, 2016, 6:03am EDT
Adventurers planning their next big trips are the perfect customers for Quest Outdoors’ newly-opened coffee shop: Base Camp Coffee.
Located within the company’s store at 4600 Shelbyville Road, Base Camp Coffee opened Friday as a meeting place for explorers and a pick-me-up station for residents heading to work in St. Matthews.
“I love the vibe coffee shops give out,” said Ryan King, who owns Quest Outdoors with his wife Michelle. “It’s a place where everyone comes together … I hope it makes money, but it’s already becoming what I hoped it would: a meeting place.”
The Kings have operated Quest Outdoors for 35 years and opened a store in the Shelbyville Road Plaza five years ago. In May, the couple consolidated its two other stores on Frankfort Ave. and in the Paddock Shops into a larger, nearly 30,000-square-foot location in the plaza.
The move gave the Kings more space to spread their products out, but it also gave them room to fulfill their dream of opening a coffee shop.
“Coffee’s something we’ve always wanted to do, but we didn’t have space or expertise,” King said.
With the perfect spot nailed down, King said he and his wife began searching for a local coffee roaster that could operate in the store. Quills Coffee was immediately interested, but King said rental agreements did not permit the coffee company to sublet. Instead, Quills employees offered to help the Kings plan a shop of their own.
“They provided the coffee, helped lay out the counter, we even bought our equipment through them,” King said. “… They’re very generous people.”
The Kings have since hired employees for the coffee shop who are also interested in the outdoors, so they can answer questions about both aspects of the business. However, King said the coffee shop is not for outdoorsy people alone. He also hopes the shop will attract people who want to learn more about various sports.
Once the shop gets off its feet, King said Quest will invite brands and local organizations to conduct presentations there.
The shop will carry fair trade products and items from local bakers. It will be open 8 a.m.-6 p.m., Monday through Friday, 9 a.m.-7 p.m., Saturday and 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Sunday – though hours could change.