Since founding Thomas Hammer Coffee Roasters 28 years ago, owner Thomas Hammer envisioned opening a coffee shop on the South Hill.
“We’ve been looking for a location on the South Hill for that long,” Hammer said. “We made an agreement with ourselves if we came to the South Hill, we were going to do it right.”
On Wednesday, Hammer opened a new concept shop, Thomas Hammer Coffee Roasters LTD Reserve, at 3173 S. Grand Blvd.
“We really wanted to bring a community coffee house to the South Hill that is open to everyone, and is a place to gather and share thoughts…to have that as a landing spot is really cool,” Hammer said.
The LTD Reserve coffee shop has a sleek, modern design with a community room and drive-thru. The shop serves beer and wine, in addition to offering an “elevated coffee experience,” Hammer said.
“I think the idea of having this elevated taste experience — whether it be coffee, food, beer or wine — was really important to us to showcase on the South Hill,” he said. “My dream is to have traditional coffee shops and if you can have an elevated coffee experience — that’s the coolest thing ever.”
The new location incorporates a “Hammer Kitchen” concept with a bakery and a fast-casual kitchen featuring recipes by Merrilee Lindaman, former owner of Lindaman’s Gourmet-To-Go Bistro, a South Hill staple that closed in 2019.
“She helped with preparing recipes and offered up a few of her plates,” Hammer said. “When we started the project, we had no idea she was planning to retire. We reached out to her and asked if she would be willing to help, and she liked the community aspect of what we were doing.”
The coffee shop was developed in partnership with Washington Trust Bank, which has a nearby branch at 3103 S. Grand Blvd. Thomas Hammer Coffee Roasters also has a café in the bank’s downtown headquarters.
It wasn’t easy building a new concept coffee shop during the pandemic, but Hammer credits the perseverance of his team and employees.
“In the toughest of days, this group has come through and accomplished something like this,” he said. “I surely couldn’t have done that on my own.”
Customers are embracing the new coffee shop since opening Wednesday morning, Hammer said.
“We’ve had a lot of customers who said they’ve been waiting for something like this on the South Hill,” Hammer said. “We’ve had the nicest comments and feedback. We’re just on cloud nine.”
Thomas Hammer Coffee Roasters has 20 locations in Eastern Washington and Idaho.
Hammer aims to open a second Thomas Hammer Coffee Roasters LTD Reserve shop in the Spokane area in the future.
“I think because of the build out cost, size and more complex operations of it, you wouldn’t put 15 of them in the city as you would a smaller coffee shop,” he said. “But cities like Spokane could easily have two or three of them.”