“I realized there’s nowhere else I’ve wanted to live other than Grover,” he said, noting he fell in love with the area while attending Cal Poly in the 1990s. “I just really love the feel and the community of Grover Beach. It’s in transition right now, but I’ve always wanted to be a part of it.”
Moreton and his wife, Miria, held a soft opening for Red Bee Coffee in late March with limited days and hours of operation, but as of Monday the business is now open seven days a week.
The 1,000-square-foot shop is located at 278 W. Grand Ave., in what was formerly The Grover Grind, which closed late last year. Moreton declined to disclose how much money the couple invested in the business.
The transition from theology to coffee wasn’t as much of a jump as one might expect: Moreton had previously worked as a barista for The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf in downtown Los Angeles, where he said he first gained an appreciation for coffee-making. That, coupled with his ministry experience while traveling internationally, brought Moreton to the idea of opening a spot in Grover Beach modeled after coffeehouse ministries — informal church congregations based out of a cafe or coffee shop, rather than a physical church.
Though you don’t have to be religious to enjoy the coffee shop, Moreton said he does hope the new business will offer a place for people to gather, share experiences and enjoy the house specialty: espresso.
Most people have two places, home and work, where they can get together and talk with people. But I want Red Bee to be that third place where they can come together.
Crosby Moreton, Red Bee Coffee owner
“I want it to be a ‘third place’ sort of experience — most people have two places, home and work, where they can get together and talk with people. But I want Red Bee to be that third place where they can come together,” he said. “I’d really love to see that.”
Red Bee is mostly a family affair: Moreton’s parents also work at the shop, helping to get it running smoothly, he said. He employs four other people, though he said he hopes to expand that as the business becomes more popular.
In the future, he also plans to add special events, open mike nights and Bible study groups, he said.
“We’ll see what people want,” he said with a laugh, “and if they’re not too tired of us, we might make every night a special themed night. We’ll see.”
Red Bee Coffee is open 6:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. on weekdays and 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. weekends.
Submit news and notes items for Biz Buzz. Email: email@example.com; on Twitter @SLOBizBuzz; phone: 805-781-7902; fax: 805-781-7905; mail: Biz Buzz, The Tribune, P.O. Box 112, San Luis Obispo, CA 93406-0112.