You can get your coffee anywhere, but Carol Coble serves hers with a generous dollop of cowgirl chatter.
“I love talking to people,” said Coble, proprietor and chief barista of the recently opened Carol’s Coffee Barn next to Bayview Shopping Center.
“Sometimes, I’m still talking to them while they’re trying to drive away,” she said this past week, adjusting her trademark Stetson hat.
Cable, who’s “50-something,” opened her two-window drive-through coffee stand a little more than two weeks ago. The 10-foot-by-15-foot little red barn trimmed in white sits along Howard Road just south of the shopping center.
It’s nestled comfortably on the parking lot next to the do-it-yourself car wash and the Goodyear Tire store. Out front are some potted plants, a colorful planter box and a little bench etched with horses, cowboys and a campfire.
Coble said there used to be another coffee stand on the same spot, and with the recent opening of the Goose Community Grocer across the street, the upside looks good.
“We’re on the way to the ferry, and on the way to the dog park,” Coble said. “This is a happening little area again,” she added as she filled the order of the latest in a steady stream of drive-up customers Thursday morning.
“Tell everyone how tasty it is,” she called as the SUV pulled away from the window.
Coble, of Freeland, has lived with her family on the South End for more than 20 years. She said she worked for years in the restaurant business in the Seattle area, but had never run a coffee operation.
However, her 19-year-old daughter Missy has been a barista for four years. Missy talked her into the new gig.
“I decided to create a job for myself,” Coble said.
“This is kind of a mother-daughter deal,” she continued. “I couldn’t do this without her. I let her be the boss of me.”
After a pause, she added with a chuckle: “She’s in Las Vegas right now. She said, ‘Outa my way, I’m goin’ to Vegas.’”
Coble offers the usual variety and sizes of espresso drinks, each served with a chocolate coffee bean on the lid. She also sells tea, hot chocolate, Italian sodas, iced tea, smoothies, bottled water and an assortment of muffins and cookies.
She said she uses only top-drawer ingredients, and that all her coffee is fair-trade and organic.
“I’m getting a lot of support from the community,” Coble said. “Everyone’s happy to have a stand here.”
A horse person and a dyed-in-the-wool Western enthusiast, Coble currently is the leader of the Sat N Saddle 4-H Horse Club in the Freeland area.
“Horses and coffee, coffee and horses,” she said.
“I thought about bringing my horse to work.”
She and her husband Ed also have a son, Jesse, 22, who’s also in the food business, in downtown Seattle.
Carol’s Coffee Barn is open Monday through Friday from 5:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. On weekends, it’s open from 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
“I get up at 4 a.m.,” she said. “When I see daybreak, I say ‘Yay!’”
The long hours don’t appear to dampen Coble’s cowgirl determination.
“I’m happy to be here,” she said. “It’s been a blast.”