STRASBURG – Flowers and towns bloom in different ways. The newest sign of downtown Strasburg stepping into a blooming space is Nancy’s Coffee Bar on King Street.
Kathryn Flynn and Kara Hockman are two of Nancy Hockman’s granddaughters who aim to rekindle her spirit in their little shop.
“She kind of embodied everything we want our coffee shop to embody,” Flynn said. “Being really into the community, open to try new things and educating people.”
Nancy’s isn’t very big, but it doesn’t need to be. Located in the front half of the same building as Box Office Brewery, the clean white counter and the sharp, sparse room is hardly a typical coffee shop. But Flynn and Hockman said they aren’t going for typical.
“We just really want it to be a fun place for the community to come learn about coffee and tea,” Flynn said. “Really, neither of us know anything about coffee. I don’t want people to feel like, ‘oh I don’t want to go in there because I don’t know what to order.”
Hockman said she normally wouldn’t have even walked into a coffee shop before Nancy's opened without Flynn or someone else who knew a little bit themselves.
Flynn said before they got started, she didn’t know much more than the fact that she liked lattes.
“Beyond that, I didn’t know it entailed so much math and making sure everything is perfect,” Flynn said. “Otherwise, it won’t taste as great as it could.”
This shop is a quick stop for Flynn, who is leaving to join the Navy soon. When she came home from college, she said she was driving to Winchester every day, looking for jobs, using different stores for WiFi and good coffee. When she got tired of driving back and forth, she tried to cut out the middleman.
“I asked my parents for an espresso maker for Christmas and they said no,” Flynn said. “So we decided to open a coffee shop.”
In order to get an idea of how to run a coffee shop, both Flynn and Hockman headed to Red Rooster Coffee in Floyd, Virginia, for training. Nancy’s Coffee Bar is partnering with Red Rooster Coffee, Swallowtail Tea and J.T. Copper syrups, all three of which are in the same building in Floyd.
The women said using high quality, local ingredients is important to them.
Their teas are sourced from all over the world with Swallowtail adding local herbs to enhance flavors with a hometown touch. And all of J.T. Copper’s syrups are handmade in small batches.
Flynn and Hockman pride themselves on their high-quality ingredients but said relationships with the town and people are just as important as what goes into every cup they sell.
Hockman said she wants the shop to be welcoming for everyone. She said they will have illustrated menus explaining what each of their drinks is. Both women can explain the difference between a latte and a cappuccino, or customers can see for themselves.
Regardless of how someone likes their coffee, or how much they know, Nancy’s should be a place for the community to gather, Flynn said.
“We don’t want anybody to be afraid of coming in,” Flynn said. “If you like coffee a certain way, that’s how you should drink it, and we’re not going to tell you that you’re drinking your coffee incorrectly.”
If You Go
Nancy’s Coffee Bar is open 6 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 7 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday.