It was cold Wednesday morning when I pulled into Rodeo Grounds on Graham Street and ordered a large latte made with almond milk, just what I needed to get the day started after a late night.
I was disappointed that Old Man Winter hadn’t come through with the sleet and snow flurries forecasters had predicted, but the latte made up for it.
It was piping hot, delicious and conveniently served to me through the drive-thru window by a friendly barista, Nicole Brosnan.
It occurred to me that I needed to write a business spotlight on this unique coffee shop located in an unassuming building near City Park.
I asked to speak to the owner and moments later, Blaine Bennetch came to the window and agreed to an interview the following morning.
I arrived Thursday to a bustling coffee shop that smelled delicious. An aroma of peppermint, coffee and breakfasty goodness filled the air while a brightly lit Christmas tree sat cheerfully in the corner.
Bennetch has owned Rodeo Grounds now for a little more than a year. He purchased it after graduating from Tarleton State University where he was on the college rodeo team for four years. In May he will graduate with a master’s degree in criminal justice.
Bennetch says he prides himself on customer service.
“Quickness is our main focus, while not losing quality or consistency,” he said. “If there is a line in the drive-thru, we will go outside and take your order.”
Rodeo Grounds serves up a variety of drinks including coffee, lattes, cappuccinos, smoothies and chai tea as well as oatmeal, bagels and English muffins topped with eggs, cheese, ham or bacon - all made to order.
And if you’re in the mood for a holiday-inspired drink, Rodeo Grounds has you covered.
“We are offering five specialty drinks through Christmas,” Bennetch said.
There’s a peppermint mocha, praline latte, raspberry truffle, Christmas in a cup (a blend of brevia, chai and peppermint) and the fireplace mocha made with mocha, toasted marshmallow and cinnamon.
“They are all pretty delicious but the raspberry truffle is my favorite,” said barista Shelby Aydelotte.
Rodeo Grounds is located at 620 S. Graham Street. They are open from 6:30 a.m. - 2 p.m. Monday-Friday, 7:30 a.m. - 2 p.m. Saturday and 8 a.m. - 1 p.m. Sunday.