Owners of Plymouth’s newest coffee shop brew up perfect pivot

 Owners of Plymouth’s newest coffee shop brew up perfect pivot

Meridian Coffee Co. co-owner Kilian Pauls cashes out Nick Ferris Wednesday night.

Like the saying goes, when life hands you lemons, make … coffee.

For close to nine years, the father-and-son duo of Reggie and Kilian Pauls operated a successful vapor shop in Plymouth’s Old Village.

A tightening of regulations in the vape industry ultimately led the Pauls to reconsider their business of choice — leading to Monday’s opening of Meridian Coffee Co. at 636 Starkweather in Plymouth’s Old Village.

Fresh look

The coffee shop operates out of the same space as the Pauls’ former business, but a remodeling has given it a stylish, Old Village-esque feel.

The owners removed a drop ceiling and drywall, exposing a character-enhancing wood ceiling, which they stained, and a old-school brick wall, which may have been around for more than a century.

The fresh look combined with the rich aroma of the high-end coffee the Pauls brew has led to a promising first week, said Kilian Pauls, who explained the details behind the family’s business conversion.

Meridian Coffee Co is located at 636 Starkweather in Plymouth's Old Village.
Meridian Coffee Co is located at 636 Starkweather in Plymouths Old Village

“It got to a point that regulations were changing so much in the vape industry that we decided to make a change,” he said. “My dad and I both love coffee and we thought this would be a great location for a coffee shop. We’ve only been open a few days, but it feels like it was a good choice.

“The feedback we’ve received so far has been great. I checked Google and all of our reviews so far are five stars. It was a 180-degree change for us — going from selling nicotine to caffeine — but I’m happy we did it.”

Set up for success

The Pauls have done their due diligence to ensure Meridian Coffee Co. will thrive. Beginning in January, they started participating in coffee shop operation training classes from Nick Ferris, the longtime owner of Ann Arbor’s successful Black Diesel.

“We wanted to make sure we were doing this the best way possible, and Nick’s one of the best in the business,” Pauls said. “We wanted to learn all the little things — like how to pour a proper espresso shot, how to stretch your milk — that make a big difference at the end of the day. The past year has been a learning process for us, but we’re ready to go.”

Kilian Pauls brews coffee in Meridian's freshly-decorated space at 636 Starkweather in Plymouth.
Kilian Pauls brews coffee in Meridians freshly decorated space at 636 Starkweather in Plymouth

Meridian employs a five-person staff (including the two Pauls), all of whom are prepared to make its customers’ coffee-drinking experience pleasurable.

“There are a lot of coffee shops out there, but a lot of them don’t give you a good cup of coffee,” Pauls said. “We want to provide our customers with great coffee, great customer service and, hopefully, those speak for themselves.

“We’re different from, let’s say, Starbucks, which is designed for the masses. Meridian is a place where people can take their time on a cup of coffee and we can add that pretty latte art. The bottom line is we want our customers’ experience to be great and we don’t want them to feel like they’re being rushed out the door.”

Local roots

Pauls, a native of Livonia, graduated from Northville High School. The family currently lives in Plymouth.

Meridian Coffee Co. is open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., seven days a week.

If you would like your business featured on SocialHouseNews.com, please contact Ed Wright at 734-664-4657 or edwright@socialhousenews.com.

Ed Wright

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