Reporting and writing by Laura Lakins
Owners Tim and Emily Bechtel opened the doors to Artisan Coffee back on Oct. 1, 2015. What had started as a hobby of home-roasting coffee and creating syrups turned into what is now one of the top-rated coffee shops in Northeast Ohio. Situated in the heart of Ellet, Artisan is known for its delicious coffee and food, cozy setting, and friendly staff.
“About 3 years before we opened here, my wife said, ‘Hey, there’s a guy doing a free class at the library on roasting coffee at home. I think you’d be interested,’” Tim says.
From there, he fell in love with the process. Tim would roast coffee for their family on the back patio of their home. Soon enough it became more than a hobby. One summer, Tim roasted coffee beans to continually contribute to fundraisers for the nonprofit organization Emily was working with at the time.
“We did that for a summer, and then at that point, how could we stop? People loved it, and from then on we started having regular buyers,” Tim says.
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The Bechtels continued to sell their coffee from their home, but the time demand between that and their full time jobs became a lot to handle. It was at that point in time that Artisan Coffee came to life. They took a leap of faith in starting their own business, something they had been conceptualizing for more than a decade.
Initially, Tim and Emily looked to build Artisan in Downtown Akron. They then realized that the type of place they were looking to build — one where you can gather with friends and family, study for school or work, or simply relax — was lacking in their own neighborhood.
They began to look in the Ellet area, and found their current building on Canton Road up for auction. Now, what was once Tim and Emily’s vision of their ideal coffee shop is a reality close to home.
Artisan has something for everyone. Whether you are in the mood for coffee, pastries or a hot meal, you can find it on their menu that they update regularly. They make everything in-house and are allergy-friendly, providing a handful of gluten-free and dairy-free options.
They rolled out their fall flavors on Sept. 1, which consists of a delicious pumpkin spice latte, apple pie latte, and a salted caramel mocha to get you in the cozy autumn spirit. Be sure to keep an eye out for their famous “Cotton Headed Ninny Muggins,” a cotton candy-flavored latte inspired by the movie Elf, that makes an appearance every holiday season.
Typically Artisan also provides various forms of entertainment for their customers through live music, pop-up shops, board games and the like, but the pandemic has put a hold on most of those. Customers are able to dine in at Artisan as they have rearranged the seating to allow for social distancing.
Tim and Emily are looking forward to the new normal that we will all find post-COVID-19, but they also extend their gratitude to the community for their support through it all, and also to their staff for the hard work they have put in to keep Artisan moving forward.
If you have yet to try Artisan, you can visit them at their main location in Ellet at 662 Canton Rd. You can also visit their location at Whole Foods in West Akron, or find them at the Hudson Farmers Market every Saturday from June to October.
You can keep up with their events and announcements via their Instagram, @artisancoffeeshop, or their Facebook page, Artisan Coffee. To find their drink selections, food menu, and more, visit www.artisancoffeeshop.com.
Laura Lakins is an educator and freelance writer from Akron, OH.
Photos: Used with permission from Tim and Emily Bechtel.