Craft & Common Orlando: Coffee Q&A
The coffee entrepreneur and Orlando native details her journey to creating Craft & Common and what to expect next.
What first sparked your interest in coffee?
I grew up in the restaurant industry, and although I have always had a big passion for hospitality, I wanted to find a way to express that passion in an environment that felt more like a community.
Why did you decide to open a coffee shop in Orlando?
After experiencing restaurant-industry-related burnout, I took a part-time job at an SCA-Certified training lab and roastery [in San Diego]. There, I learned the process and saw the passion of those in the industry. I am from Orlando originally and I knew if I was going to put down roots, this was the place I wanted to be.
When designing the shop and experience, how did you seek to differentiate Craft & Common?
My husband and I moved into an RV full-time in 2017 and traveled the country. We used our first-hand [visits to] hundreds of coffee shops to hone the Craft & Common experience. We knew we wanted a space that felt warm, bright and welcoming, [where] customers could watch baristas and feel like part of our family.
How would you describe your role at Craft & Common?
As a business owner, there’s really no job that’s off limits. My greatest joy is being a leader. I truly love working with our team to encourage and support their personal and professional growth.
What’s the most creative drink you’ve ever made?
Our three specialty craft lattes were inspired by our travels and invoke a nostalgic feeling from our time on the road. The Dunes is made with cinnamon and orange (Utah and the red rocks) and The Pacific Fog is made with lavender and pink Himalayan sea salt (Oregon coast). The Wild Child [evokes] the feeling of being free and living in the moment.
What’s your favorite drink?
My daily go-to is a plain ol’ whole milk cappuccino.
What’s been the biggest challenge?
COVID has really been really challenging. We opened in the summer of 2018, and though your first year in business has its own challenges, COVID has presented so many challenges that I never experienced—even in my 15-year tenure with the restaurant industry.
What do you do on your day off?
As a business owner, I always say that I get “time off” rather than “days off.” I try to sneak in late mornings and cut out a few hours early. When I do get away, I really enjoy hanging out with my two dogs and getting outdoors as much as possible.
Who has been your greatest professional influence and why?
I don’t think I could name one person in particular; I gravitate towards strong and transparent leaders that have the ability to self-reflect and a desire to improve each day. I’ve worked for women for most of my career, and it’s inspiring to see a strong and talented female in charge.
What’s your favorite Central Florida restaurant right now?
It’s hard to choose. I admit my husband and I order takeout a little too often these days, but we love supporting local restaurants and try to spread the love. You’ll definitely catch us frequenting the local taco spots.
What can visitors expect to see in the future?
We have a few new projects in the works; however, we are most excited about our new roasting program and expansion into e-commerce. We spent a great deal of time working on roasting profiles and will soon offer our own roasted coffee to customers and wholesale partners by the end of this year.
Any rules to live by?
Be yourself, that is good enough.
Craft & Common Coffee & Goods
47 E. Robinson St., Ste. 100, Orlando, FL
Chocolate or vanilla? Chocolate
Coffee or tea? Coffee
Beer or wine? Wine
Pizza or pasta? Pizza
Bagel or biscuit? Bagel
Latte or cappuccino? Cappuccino
Street eats or sit-down? Street
More time or more money? Time—no question
Current Binge? Acai bowls from Purple Ocean Superfood Bar