Dayton’s first espresso stop opens
October 21, 2004
DAYTON – Russell and Kelly Clausson weren’t satisfied with the joe in this town, so they decided to brew their own.
They bought an industrial-strength, stainless steel espresso maker, a smoothie machine and a whole lot of maroon paper cups. They scouted out real estate until deciding on a small building beside the Chevron. Sixty-five Silver Street used to be a Chinese laundry, built in the mid-1800s, and at one point an opium den.
The Claussons said Dayton isn’t the easiest place to find commercial property. And this place needed a lot of work before it could open. But, in the end, this is the shop they envisioned; the first espresso café in all of Dayton.
“They’ve been waiting for us here,” Russell Clausson said. “They’re thanking us.”
The Claussons opened Espresso by F.R. Bean on July 27. In their first six days, Kelly Clausson said, she used 684 20-ounce cups. She makes an average of 80 drinks a day. Popular selections are the $3-$4 mochas or chai teas. In a week she uses about 40 gallons of milk and six 64-fluid-ounce bottles of Ghiradelli chocolate.
Their most caffeine-consuming customer is a little old lady who orders four shots of espresso and sips it like tea.
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Two men came inside the small sage-green and yellow café and ordered caramel mochas, hold the whipped cream. Clausson busied herself at the espresso machine and pumped out some Ghiradelli chocolate and caramel.
A few minutes later a car came through the drive-through, which is most of their business. A bell rang in the shop, which signals to Clausson the customer is ready to order. Their drive-through technology is limited to a doorbell outside the window.
Russell Clausson said they don’t have a heater, but all the power radiating off the equipment is enough to keep the place warm. It seems to work for his wife, who dashes between the cash register and the window in a pair of shorts and a light sweater. Her long, tropical earrings swayed with her steps.
Kelly Clausson is at work at 5 a.m., and her morning rush comes between 6 a.m. and 8 a.m.
“A lot of them are men and women on their way to work,” she said. “Men go for the brew and ladies like the lattés and mochas.”
Espresso by F.R. Bean is open 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays and 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekends.
Some may ask if Dayton can support its own espresso stop, but Dayton Area Chamber of Commerce executive director Ed Peck says sure.
Lyon County has averaged about 50 new homes a month in Dayton for the last six months. Peck said the residential growth will bring more retail businesses.
“I see an additional full-service grocery store in the not-too-distant future and all the things that come with that, like a Rite-Aid,” he said at his office in the Dayton museum. “It’s hard to predict if we could get a Wal-Mart because we’re so close to the other one.”
Wal-Mart plans to build a supercenter in northeast Carson City to be open by summer 2005.
Contact reporter Becky Bosshart at email@example.com or 881-1212.