Best of the Boat: MountainBrew wins best coffee shop

Tom Ross
Tasha and Al Campos have been so successful with MountainBrew, they've opened a third location in Old Town Hot Springs.
Tom Ross

— Tasha and Al Compos have a good thing going at MountainBrew coffee shop at 427 Oak St., and it’s as welcoming as it is aromatic.

“I think it’s the neighborhood feel here on Oak Street,” Tasha says.

MountainBrew is situated on the main level of an older home on the way to schools, churches and the post office. The sign out front signals that it’s a coffee shop, but really it’s a restaurant that feels like home.

Al says a significant number of their customers are regulars whom they see more than once each week. “If we don’t see them for a while, we wonder where they are,” he says. “The best thing about owning a business like this in a town like this is your regular customers,” Tasha adds.

Those regular customers now also have a third location where they can feast on Tasha’s baked goods while sipping coffee and caramel macchiatos. With a satellite location already in the main lobby of Bud Werner Memorial Library, they opened a new Mountain Brew location nearby inside Old Town Hot Springs on Oct. 1.

Catering to coffee lovers is the whole strategy, Al says, as is strengthening relationships with loyal customers. Tasha, who rises before 3 a.m. every day to begin baking, likes to change up the menu seasonally. Along with the return of hearty soups for the autumn, she’s bringing out a black-bean burger on a Greek yogurt bun with arugula and tzatziki sauce (yogurt blended with cucumbers, garlic and olive oil). And, of course, there are slices of pizza and quiche as well as breakfast throughout the day, along with Tasha’s famous cupcakes, cookies and thick-sliced breads.

“As long as customers keep coming, I’ll keep getting up early,” Tasha says.

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