Spilling the beans

The Mocha Nut Coffee Shop offers new cafe experience to Southport community

At first glance, it looks like just another bland coffee shop off the side of Southport Road. However, the parking lot always has cars pulling in and out, and there are always people smiling, enjoying their coffee and having conversations out at the wooden tables in front. When I walked into the shop on an early Saturday

morning, my anxieties flew out the window as I was greeted with a warm welcome.

The Mocha Nut Coffee Shop, located on 1625 E. Southport Road, is a local coffee shop that is co-owned and operated by Clint and Marnie Weber and their son Seth. The shop offers a relaxed atmosphere with tasty drinks, and its family-owned roots create a connection with the Southport community. 

As soon as I stepped foot inside the shop, I was hit with the pleasant smell of coffee and a friendly greeting from the cashier. I was surprised to see that there was already a small crowd of people there, even though it was only 8 a.m. on a weekend. The interior is industrial and has a comfortable, rustic vibe. The smell of fresh coffee, the whispers of the customers’ conversations and the sound of the coffee machines whirring made me feel welcomed and safe. The shop is a perfect size, not tiny or huge. It has a relaxing environment and isn’t be loud or very busy like other cafés. I also love the decorative hanging light bulbs because they add warmth to the room, making it feel homey.

Kelsey Jones
The Mocha Nut Coffee Shop opened on
June 10, 2019. Since then, it has become a
regular spot for Southport locals to drink

 I must admit that I don’t really enjoy drinking coffee, but I decided to try the iced vanilla latte and the strawberry açaí flavored refresher. When my friends arrived, we decided to try the snacks that they had. We all agreed on the oatmeal no-bake cookies, which we learned were made by none other than Marnie’s mom. We loved hanging out there and had a great time because it felt nice to talk and laugh out loud in the cafe. Overall, I think it is one of the best places in the community to just hang out with friends or to go alone to enjoy the atmosphere, coffee, free WiFi and positive energy.

Seth, the co-owner that I talked to, shared some future goals for the shop. Weber said that they want to add a drive-thru to make it easier for people to order coffee, and they also want to get more involved in community events in the future.

Kelsey Jones
Seth Weber, one of the co-owners along
with Clint and Marnie Weber, makes
espresso shots.

Delaney Brown, a barista at The Mocha Nut, thinks that everyone who knows about the place should come and give it a chance because it is a nice place to relax and talk. She thinks it’s a great spot to connect and is happy to see that almost everyone that comes in is with someone else.

Later I got to talk to Marnie, who told me the whole backstory of the coffee shop, which started as a family dream to give back to the community. They were always talking about opening up a coffee shop that would allow people to feel comfortable and interact with each other, not stare at their phones. Her friend, Carol Torp, also shared that dream with her but unfortunately, she passed away before getting a chance to open the shop with them.

Freshman Kaitlin Osborne is a close family friend of the Webers and goes to church with them.

“Carol and Marnie were the leaders of my sister’s youth group,” Osborne said. “When Carol was in the hospital, her and Marnie were talking about ways to expand the community and ways to put their talent in place, and they decided it would work if they opened a coffee shop. So as soon as Carol died, they went and bought it. They told us this was what Carol would have wanted.”

In late August 2017, Marnie’s family bought what used to be a Greek restaurant and took nearly two years to renovate it because they were doing all the work themselves along with the support of friends and family. Weber continued to share with me the hardships of turning the dream of owning a coffee shop into a reality. At first, they thought they would be able to open in about 3 months, but because of issues and the amount of work they had to put in the shop, it took a little longer. There was a lot of stress and grief, but Marnie and her family learned throughout the whole process.

They officially opened on June 10, 2019, about three months ago. For me, it definitely seemed worth the time and effort they put into it because every little design detail came together, giving the Mocha Nut a picturesque feel to it. They impressed me, my friends and everyone else I have talked to about the shop.

From a Greek restaurant to a coffee shop with a rustic, at-home feel, The Mocha Nut Coffee Shop is one of the best places to go hang out with loved ones and get coffee. The blood, sweat and tears of two years of renovation really paid off to give the shop a designated aesthetic but sincere feel. I am glad the coffee shop is gaining the attention it truly deserves. I see the shop to be more of a destination than somewhere one just goes to get coffee. I strongly recommend anyone go check it out if they have the chance and to bring friends or family along as well.