As part of the Taste of Manchester 2017 Marketing Committee, Amy has volunteered to write short features on the participating restaurants and share them via our blog here.This year's Taste of Manchester will be held on Tuesday, May 9th from 5:30 to 9 p.m. See the TOM webpage, Facebook page, or Twitter @TastyTownCT (#TOMCT2017) for more information.
Silk City Coffee
For years now, my neighbors and I have bemoaned the fact that Downtown Manchester was lacking a decent coffeehouse. Main Street is brimming with breakfast joints, but once mid-afternoon comes and they close for the day, there's nowhere to sit and work or meet a friend over a good, non-corporate cup of joe.
The cozy space
Enter Silk City Coffee, the answer to all of Manchester's caffeine-withdrawal-induced prayers. Located right in the middle of Main Street (#763, to be exact), this cozy, small-town coffee shop opened in the fall of 2016 and has been going strong ever since.
Caleb making an Espresso over Lemonade
High school sweethearts who are now married, Sarah and Rob May manage the shop and own it along with business partners Tammy and Glenn Gerhard, who were the couple's guidance counselors and mentors. Talking one day about their feeling of dissatisfaction with their jobs, the Gerhards asked the Mays if there was anything they could be doing, what would it be? The Mays imagined owning a small coffee shop, and the four of them decided to make it happen.
Sarah May at work
The shop offers a variety of coffee/espresso drinks and high quality teas, as well as a hot chocolate that is to die for. They come up with some creative seasonal drinkss as well, like this summer's strange-sounding yet refreshing and zippy "Espresso over Lemonade" (trust me, it incredibly good). Sarah is the shop's baker, and the place has become well-known in town for their incredible cinnamon buns. They also have a small lunch menu and plenty of other specialty treats like cookies and pastries, all made from scratch, in house. The Mays have always loved to entertain, and now, Sarah says, "It's fun for us to have the whole town over!"
Affogato - Espresso poured over vanilla gelato
The cozy space, with tables, counters, sofas and comfy chairs, is perfect for a first date, a work meeting, or just a place to read a book and have a cup. Better yet, the Mays and Gerhards share a community-driven vision. In the back of the shop is the "Needs Board" featuring dozens of notes in which people state their needs and neighbors respond. The profit from t-shirts on sale in the shop go toward meeting these communal needs as well.
The Needs Board
Sarah says they chose Manchester because they "fell in love with the small-town feel." And there's no better way to experience that feeling than by attending the annual Taste of Manchester which is on Tuesday May 9 from 5:30-9. Silk City Coffee will be supplying participants with tastes of their batch brew, housemade chai and hot chocolate, with a mini-chocolate chip cookie on the side. Yummmmm.....!!!
Silk City Coffee's summer hours are Monday-Wednesday 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Thursday-Saturday 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. They occasionally host live music nights as well. They can be found on Facebook and @silkcitycoffee on Instagram.