Scout Coffee owners hope to create a buzz in SLO

Owners Jon and Sara Peterson opened Scout Coffee in downtown San Luis Obispo in January.
Owners Jon and Sara Peterson opened Scout Coffee in downtown San Luis Obispo in January.

From the precisely scuffed baseboards at the coffee bar to the yellow baroque wallpaper adorning a front wall, Scout Coffee Co. owners Jon and Sara Peterson are hoping an attention to detail paired with a special brand of coffee will help their new shop stand out in San Luis Obispo’s already coffee-saturated downtown.

“Our focus has really been making everything awesome and executing those details,” Sara Peterson said as she sipped water from a blue glass cup the same shade as the nearby stools. “We care so much about the little details.”

The coffee shop opened at 1130 Garden St. on Jan. 20, situated between 13 other coffee establishments downtown — including Linnaea’s Café, a longtime favorite among locals, just a few doors down the street.

The pair isn’t concerned about the competition, though; both say their coffee speaks for itself.

“We just kept asking customers to come back,” Sara Peterson said. “We don’t like to tell people what makes us different. We let our coffee do that.”

Scout Coffee serves only Verve Coffee Roasters, a wholesale coffee brand that the Petersons both worked for in Santa Cruz before relocating to San Luis Obispo in July. Sara spent four years as director of retail operations at Verve Coffee Roasters, and Jon spent three years as marketing director there.

Kruezberg, CA on Higuera Street is the only other local establishment that serves Verve Coffee.

Scout Coffee also sells several different baked goods such as scones, morning buns and cookies that Sara Peterson prepares herself, as well as an assortment of teas, natural sodas and milkshakes.

Opening Scout hasn’t been all sweet, though. Before opening, the couple had trouble securing extra financing they needed to open the shop. But with the help of Economic Vitality Corporation, they obtained a small business loan from CoastHills Federal Credit Union.

Jon Peterson declined to share how much they invested in the business, as well as loan details, but said that it was their “life savings, and something we worked really hard to build for nearly 10 years.”

The business, which currently employs 10, is looking to hire more staff.