I am often surprised by life. It is this kind of good surprise that had me inspired this weekend.
I head off to go and find the new premises for The Barn Owl along the Currys Post Road alog the Midlands Meander. While I have sampled their coffee on various occasions from their mobile home, I have not had much further exposure to the brand. Ok, so a little but of social media posting, but that’s it, I promise.
Parked at Groundcover, I alight from my vehicle. What a surprise. There is this gorgeous barn-style, statuesque building located where the horses used to graze (no horses were upset in the making of this building, their pastures have simply moved around a bit).
Perfectly positioned to catch an almost 180 degree view of the hills leading into the valley towards Lions River, and as I have been informed, the most generous sunsets.
Ryan, the owner, greets me as I walk across the pavers to the entrance. The entrance is almost a wall of window panes allowing views of the outdoors in as well as bathing the interior in natural light.
Ryan tells me that he originally made his career in the corporate world. While doing really well in the concrete jungle, he still found that he wasn’t happy and wanted something different. The more disenchanted he became, he begin to think about pursuing something different in life that would be more reflective of his passion. So began an interest in coffee and mobile coffee service, which gave birth to a different network and realm of possibilities.
Ryan began conversation with the owner of Groundcover and they conceptualised an idea of having a coffee shop on the property. And so, The Barn Owl coffee and restaurant was born.
Says Ryan “coffee is social, and that is one of the things I really enjoy about it. I am a social person and love meeting people”.
There is nothing standard about this shop and there is a great deal still to come. From plans to have a coffee training facility for locals, to adding indoor trees and plants, to having Friday nights with a musical vibe and maybe including some outdoor activities. It is clear that this is one place that is intent of growing and plugging into the community.
As I sip my coffee and stare off at the green hills and valley forests, I smile at the bustle of conversation of patrons around me. It is full of people with nothing but smiles. Word certainly does get around quickly in this neck of the woods.
The menu may yet be a Test Menu according to the restaurant; but people are complimenting the food being served enthusiastically. I certainly look forward to coming back to try out some really great food.
I also am intent on capturing the sunset here someday. It looks as thought it could be magical.
Until then…..see you on the Road.