FAIRBORN — For James and Lynne Mowery, everything happens for a reason. So when searching for a physical location for Fifty5 Cold Brew, the building at 644 North Broad Street ended up being a perfect fit — in more ways than one.
With 13 years of experience in franchising and entrepreneurship, the Mowerys aren’t new to the game. The two founded Fifty5 Rivers Cold Brew in 2018, initially as an e-commerce business. Fifty5 Rivers creates crafted cold brew coffee and tea for consumers and businesses alike. The company offers ready-to-drink cold brew in pouches from 750 milliliters, to 3 liters, as well as bag-in-box up to 20 liters.
Contrary to popular belief, cold brew is different from iced coffee. Iced coffee is brewed hot and poured over ice, in a process that only takes a few minutes. Cold brew, by contrast, is brewed over the course of 12 to 48 hours at a much lower temperature. The result is a completely different flavor profile compared to your regular cup o’ joe.
Prior to acquiring their own brick-and-mortar location, the Mowerys brewed and conducted taste tests out of their home. However, throughout their business venture, the Mowerys knew that having a physical business was the ultimate goal.
“We always knew we wanted to have a location,” James Mowery said.
When their search ended up between the Fairborn building and another building in Dayton, problems with the other location pushed the family to settle on the Broad Street location. The decision proved to be a good one.
“The city has been very welcoming,” Lynne Mowery said. “The other businesses have also been very welcoming. We have a good clientele base already here in the community.”
Fifty5 Rivers isn’t a cafe. Their business model lends itself more to carry-out and delivery, as well as engaging in partnership with local businesses. In fact, the second floor of the Innovation Lab, as they call it, is a space entirely devoted to both young people and entrepreneurs. As of this writing, Fifty5 Rivers is developing an entrepreneurial leadership program for kids ages 15 to 19.
“This is meant to be a sort of collaborative space,” James Mowery said. “It’s about getting youth used to skills in areas outside of college.”
This includes teaching teens about leadership skills such as self-awareness, communication, creativity in problem solving, and the ability to follow through.
The Innovation Lab is also an opportunity for small businesses to collaborate with Fifty5 Rivers, something that the Mowerys would like to do more of. Many of these efforts, however, have been stymied due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“It’s been tough with coronavirus because there’s some small businesses we’ve been building relationships with that didn’t survive,” James Mowery said.
Nevertheless, the business has already made an impact on the community. Fifty5 Rivers has had glowing reviews of their two current blends of coffee, and is currently working on options for decaf drinkers.
“The goal is five blends of coffee and five blends of tea,” Lynne Mowery said. “We’re looking at expanding options for decaf drinkers, to give them multiple choices.”
Reach London Bishop at (937) 502-4532
or follow @LBishopFDH on Twitter