Knowing Your Neighbors: History Happening at Amity Coffee

After Two Years of Business, Amity Coffee is the First Lakeside Business to Sell Liquor

DULUTH, Minn. – Duluth contains decade’s worth of history, some which is still impacting the community, today. However, this summer, one law was lifted.

For many, a cup of coffee creates hours of conversation.

“My husband and I would travel a lot and when we would go we would always stop at little, local coffee shops. We just jumped into it; it was kind of a leap of faith,” said Patti Swank, Owner of Amity Coffee.

For the owners of Amity Coffee in the Duluth Lakeside Neighborhood, it’s a conversation two years in the making.

“Some things have worked, some things have not. We have learned so much in those two years,” said Swank.

Two years of business, whispers in the wind throughout this historic area.

“All the people that we’ve seen have come in have said, we would love to be able to come in to a little shop like this and have a glass of wine or a beer,” said Swank.

A request, continuously denied due to a law dating back to the 1890s. After 126 years, the State of Minnesota, finally lifted the ban, allowing Lakeside and Lester Park businesses to offer liquor in 2016.

“We’ve been learning a lot along the way. I think over the last two years it’s been an incredible learning curve.”

A curve, creating a cultural experience for those stopping by.

“When we opened our doors, we had an overwhelmingly awesome response to us,” said Swank.

“This would be a cool opportunity, let’s try this and see what happens,” said Jordan Rykkonen, Manager at Amity Coffee.

Opportunity has since opened up new beginnings at this family owned java joint.

“Bringing in the music has been a really huge piece of growing our business,” said Swank.

Mixing in beer and wine, opening up a new chapter for the future of this Lakeside façade.

“It’s all local. There’s so much talent right here in Duluth it’s just been a really awesome thing to be able to showcase that,” said Swank.

The shop also offers various baked goods, creative cups of coffee, along with a space for local culture to come together.

“Now that we’ve brought beer and wine in, it has helped support us in being able to continue that and being able to showcase the community.”

Amity Coffee opens Monday through Friday at 6:30a.m. and on the weekends at 8:00a.m.

For a full list of entertainment and local happenings, check out their Facebook Page.

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