From Roaster to Cup

Local Coffee Roaster promises unique coffee experience

By Chris Bavender

For the last four years, Indie Coffee Roasters has primarily operated as an online company or worked with other companies and wholesale partners. But that’s about to change when the coffee company opens its first brick and mortar location in Carmel in mid-January 2018 at 220 E. Main St.

“It had always been a dream of ours to open a space for people to call home, but for the longest time it just wasn’t in the cards,” said Alec Tod, co-owner. “Then, after our partners prayed over the space after walking past it many times, they just had a good feeling when they saw the for sale sign, that this was the place for Indie Coffee Roasters.”

Emotional connection

The coffee company’s name and slogan - there’s a new dog in town - originated in 2012 when Tod and wife, Jenny, were looking for a name for their mini dachshund puppy that was a play on the word Indiana. That same philosophy was applied to the name of the company.

“We love Indiana and we’re an independent company, very grass roots. So the word Indie made sense as in a mix of Indiana and independent,” he said. “As we were thinking through the opening campaign we really wanted to showcase the idea that our brand (highlighted from our mascot Indie) was the new dog in town, joining the (Carmel) greyhound.”

Todd said the goal is to create a space where the coffee can be showcased “in the highest form.”

“There’s one open air room dedicated to roasting, therefore you’ll be able to experience the whole process. We believe after seeing the coffee roasted there’s a sense of emotional connection to the process.,” he said. “But we don’t stop there. Our entire coffee bar experience will be centered on sharing the whole process with the guest from talking through tasting notes to teaching guests the differences between brewing methods.”

At the beginning, roasting will take place one day a week and increase with demand. Indie Coffee Roasters will also offer public tasting and home brewing classes.

Diane McAndrews, co-owner along with her husband, Kevin, is the Dir. of Retail. He’s the Dir. of Operations. Although the Carmel area abounds with coffee shops, she believes Indie Coffee will give customers the opportunity to have the freshest possible coffee.

“Similar to the idea of ‘from farm to table’ we will be ‘from roaster to cup,’” McAndrews said. “Roasting fresh, quality, direct trade beans on site will allow the coffee to stand out.”

 Rethinking the coffee shop

To that end, the 2,500 square foot shop’s atmosphere will feature a minimalistic retro style. Inside, there’ll be seating for around 50, with another 25 seats outside.

“Indie Coffee Roasters wants to stand out as a place people feel comfortable coming in no matter what your coffee taste are,” McAndrews said. “We believe in rethinking coffee as a whole and hope you can experience a new way of enjoying your favorite coffees.”

“Our goal is for everything that we do to reflect our brand as a whole and specifically our values  - ‘We give, we welcome, we stand out, we educate, we have fun,’” Tod said. “We feel in order to do this everything from cups to design must be intentional. So, we hope this space will make you rethink the coffee shop experience.”

Along with the coffee, customers will be able to enjoy a variety of baked items from area partners including scones, biscotti, muffins, and donuts on the weekend.

As if things aren’t hectic enough trying to open the coffee shop, the Tod’s welcomed their first baby in November - a little boy named Roman Myles. While it’s a busy time, Tod said team members are there to lift each other up.

“And in this season of a lot going on I lean on the rest of the team to continue to work together to grow this brand,” he said. “But, when you’re passionate about this as much as we are we understand we have to surround ourselves with amazing people to continue to grow the brand. “

Within a year, McAndrews anticipates Indie Coffee Roasters will become an “accessible place for the people in the community, a destination for the people who are just visiting the area and where coffee knowledge has been elevated to a new level of appreciation.”

For now, the focus is on the Carmel location, but the Tod’s and McAndrews’ plan on  “unleashing” another location in the future.

Indie Coffee Roasters will be open 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesdays through Thursdays, and 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays.