Business associates Ned Jones and Mark Janasik hope to open the Southern Grounds coffee shop this week at 1671 Atlantic Blvd.
It will feature coffee, of course, along with breakfast, brunch, soups, salads, hot and cold sandwiches, tartines, protein grain bowls, charcuterie and cheese, children’s fare, seasonal items and beer and wine, according to our Jacksonville Daily Record News partner.
There also are pastries, breads, shirts, hats, mugs, wholesale coffee, wine and food for sale to take out.
“I think we’re successfully trying to pair food, coffee, everything together in a coffee house of the future,” Janasik said.
“You don’t just go in and get a cup of coffee,” he said, explaining there is food to eat on-site or takeout; a coffee bar; and an outdoor deck and seating separated by a fence from the train tracks. Local artists, such as acoustic singer-songwriters, are anticipated to perform Fridays and Saturdays.
“This is truly a gathering spot,” Janasik said, echoing the Southern Grounds tagline: Gather together.
Hours will be 6:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. daily. Total seating is 60. It will employ 15-20 people.
Garage doors open to the deck, which offers a view of Downtown. The deck is dog-friendly. Train tracks run past it, offering patrons a view of logistics several times a day.
San Marco is the second location for Southern Grounds. The first opened in Neptune Beach. There, like in San Marco, Jones owns the property and Janasik operates the business.
They are looking for more sites. Jones said he buys the locations and Janasik runs them.
They didn’t disclose the investment cost, but it appears to near at least $1 million, based on building permits and the cost of buying the 3,600-square-foot building, which was developed in 1967, and the additional price of equipment and inventory.
The large kitchen can produce baked goods, soups and seasonal specials for the Neptune Beach shop at 200 First St. Catering will be offered.
Parking includes about 20 adjacent spaces and leased space for 30 more across the tracks. There also are bike racks.
“I like that it’s a local coffee shop,” said attorney Bryan Mickler, president of the San Marco Preservation Society.
“They’ve obviously spent a lot of money on that building. It’s going to be fun,” he said.