Catasauqua Press

Thursday, November 23, 2017
PRESS PHOTO BY PAUL CMILVicki Bartholomew stands next to her Victorian cash register at Blocker’s Coffee Shop, 311 Front St., during the shop’s grand opening Oct. 14. PRESS PHOTO BY PAUL CMILVicki Bartholomew stands next to her Victorian cash register at Blocker’s Coffee Shop, 311 Front St., during the shop’s grand opening Oct. 14.
PRESS PHOTO BY PAUL CMILJoyce Marin, from Macungie Mountain Farms, sets up a food tent outside the coffee shop for hungry swing dancers from the nearby Gas House Dance Hall on Front Street. PRESS PHOTO BY PAUL CMILJoyce Marin, from Macungie Mountain Farms, sets up a food tent outside the coffee shop for hungry swing dancers from the nearby Gas House Dance Hall on Front Street.

Coffee culture in Catasauqua

Wednesday, October 18, 2017 by PAUL CMIL Special to The Press in Local News

New Front St. shop offers fair-trade beans, loose-leaf teas

There’s a new shop in town, and it’s serving up some hot drinks.

Vicki Bartholomew has set up a local coffee shop — Blocker’s Coffee Shop on Front Street in Catasauqua Borough. Customers can get good coffee to go or sit around and socialize.

“We have loose-leaf tea that we brew, too,” she said.

The grand opening of Blocker’s Coffee Shop Oct. 14 coincided with a performance by April Mae and the June Bugs at the adjacent Gas House Dance Hall.

“We want to continue with swing dancing on the second Saturday,” she said.

Bartholomew also manages the Gas House.

“I wanted to expand the options at the Gas House, and the coffee shop was an idea. We don’t have a coffee shop in town,” she said.

In addition, she plans to organize live music every Saturday.

“We talked to a couple of local bands who are interested,” Bartholomew said.

More ideas on the horizon are open mic nights and an all-ages metal band night.

“We want to have a place where teens can come and listen to live metal rock music,” she added.

The goal is to continue and improve the Gas House venue, and the coffee shop is a place where everyone can meet and socialize.

“We stay open until 7 p.m. every night, but we extend the hours on Saturday when we have an event,” she said.

The shop closes 5 p.m. Sundays.

Everything at the shop is certified organic. Fair-trade coffee beans are fast-freighted in from Boulder, Colo. Baked goods come from both Egypt Star Bakery and Blondie’s. Full of Crepe stops by with its food truck on occasion.

For the grand opening, Bartholomew had Joyce Marin, from Macungie Mountain Farms, come by with some unique offerings. Native American dishes included bison burgers and fry bread, topped off with Indian soup.

Bartholomew also had a soft opening before the grand opening.

“Today (for the grand opening) was our best day,” she said. “We had people lined up early in the day.”

As for other future plans, Bartholomew said, “I am going to rent the hall out for events. There are a couple of private parties planned. I have a vintage swap meet and flea market scheduled for November.”