Meet the Sandhill Mobile Cafe: A Q&A with Phil
Written by Erica Zazo
The wait is finally over! We’re so excited to introduce you to our new Sandhill Mobile Cafe.
In this Q&A, we sit down with founder of Sandhill Coffee, Phil Wingo, who talks about how he came up with the idea for the mobile coffee trailer, where the Sandhill coffee community can find us this summer, and all the details on this new, exciting edition to Sandhill.
This June, Sandhill Coffee celebrates our fourth year in business. I am very grateful to make it to this point. Each year, more and more people join our coffee community, and it is amazing to see people enjoying the coffee. It is very rewarding to see the continued support for our small business, and next year, year 5, will be no different!
The next step, which I am excited to debut, is the mobile coffee bar – the Sandhill Mobile Cafe! It’s a 7 x 12 ft enclosed cafe on wheels, which I’ve been outfitting throughout spring to get ready for our launch this summer
The idea for going mobile came after working with a SBDC (Small Business Development Counselor) and planning the growth over the next couple years. While we originally wanted to introduce a food truck design, I am happy we landed on the idea of the trailer. The trailer came after a weekend of watching mobile food business videos. Our trailer is more mobile than a full truck, sleek and branded with our new logo, and just the right size for our cafe. Check out our social media to see where we are at to grab a coffee!
With our trailer, we can meet folks out at music festivals, art fairs, farmer’s markets, street events, and in the community.
We’re headed to a bunch of events this summer and into the fall with the Sandhill Mobile Cafe. Our first event with the trailer was in Lemont at Mabel's Market (don’t worry if you missed us, we’re headed there again on September 26). You can read more about what events we’ll be at this year on our blog and on our events page.
The Sandhill Mobile Cafe will also be at a number of food truck meet-ups. Make sure to follow our Instagram for updates on where we’re headed, and when.
You can also book the Sandhill Mobile Cafe for private events like weddings, graduations, back-to-the-office parties, and, really, any celebration you’re hoping to serve local-roasted coffee at. If you’re interested in booking the Sandhill Mobile Cafe at your private event, reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can for sure get excited for all of our hot and cold coffees. We will have our drip coffee maker, as well as our new espresso machine, making a variety of drinks right inside the trailer. Standard drinks like cappuccinos, lattes, and mochas (with your choice of flavors and customizations) will be available year round, and we’ll also have a rotating menu of specialty seasonal drinks.
We will also serve a mix of grab-and-go local baked goods and food items. I’m looking forward to partnering with local foodies and bakers to stock the mobile cafe with great items that pair well with coffee drinks throughout the day.
And of course, we’ll always have our fresh-roasted beans and Sandhill apparel (shirts, hats, coffee mugs, etc.) available for purchase on the trailer as well.
I am so excited to continue to serve people coffee, but instead, out of this new and creative venue. The Sandhill Mobile Cafe is a fun and unique way to stick to our roots as an outdoor-focused brand, without needing to step into a brick-and-mortar store for a new Sandhill experience.
I have always served drip coffee and sold our beans at farmer’s markets around the region – but this is going to be an awesome way to deliver the same great product in an entirely new way. The first few years at Sandhill we really focused on growing our roasting techniques and abilities. Now we’re adding a component of fresh coffee drinks brewed right from the espresso machine on the trailer.
From my point of view, I’m excited to share all that I’ve learned – from the sourcing of beans, to roasting, to now serving you directly from the mobile cafe to cup. It’s important for me to make sure our customers are able to experience the whole process, especially knowing how and where our beans were sourced all the way to how our product makes it to its final form: a steaming, iced, or frothed coffee in your cup.
Yes! Our small but mighty team is growing and we’re looking to hire staff to fill a number of roles:
Coffee servers – Do you love slinging espresso and grinding fresh beans? Or, do you think you’d be great at coffee service but still need to learn the skills? We’re looking for a number of folks to help staff our mobile cafe and interact with our customers by serving them the best coffee in town.
Events manager – Sandhill is rolling up to more events than ever. We’re hoping to help find a true brand ambassador and Sandhill advocate for our team who loves interacting with the public, is willing to share our Sandhill story, and can help educate the community about our farm to cup approach to coffee.
Even if you’re cautious or are still learning the ins-and-outs of Sandhill coffee and brewing the perfect cup, that’s okay!
We’d love to teach you everything we know and help you become a member of the Sandhill team.
All interested candidates can reach out to me, Phil, at email@example.com.