Que’s Espresso has served barista beverages and local grab-and-go food in Longmont for nearly 13 years. For owner Rob Quesenberry, the local coffee shop’s community feel is the key to its longevity.
“Hey Dave,” Quesenberry said as a regular, Longmont resident Dave Crotser, walked through the door for his go-to two shot americano.
“Hey Rob,” Crotser said.
With Que’s established at 600 S Airport Rd for more than a decade, Quesenberry has gotten to know customers by name. He’s known longtime regulars go through different milestones. For Quesenberry, building lasting relationships across the coffee counter is what’s made Que’s a staple in its regulars’ daily routines and what separates itself from large businesses.
“You walk in and people don't know their name. You walk in and walk out and you don't have that much of an interaction with people that go there or the people that work there. And I think that it's really important, especially given the recent climate that we've had, you know, having interpersonal relationships with people where you're spending your money and where you're getting your products,” Quesenberry said.
Quesenberry first started in the coffee business when he was in high school. He said he didn’t realize it at first, but he fell in love with baristaing and how coffee shops connected him with new people.
Before Que’s, Quesenberry operated coffee businesses around Boulder County. When Que’s originally opened, it was a part of that former business. Quesenberry changed the name, and dedicated his time and resources into the Longmont coffeehouse. Vesta, Quesenberry’s 15-year-old daughter works in the shop with him, and he said she’s grown up being around all of his coffee businesses.
The majority of Que’s customers are regulars, some following Quesenberry from previous businesses. His favorite part of running Que’s is getting to know customers through different life stages.
“I watched kids grow up. People grow up and go from being single, to married and having kids,” he said.
Crotser has been a customer for about two to three years, coming in for coffee and snacks almost daily. He said that knowing the staff on a first name basis, and the coffee taste is what keeps him coming back.
“They know my name, I know their name. It feels very friendly. And maybe just as important, their coffee and their espresso, it is some of the best that I have tasted around,” Crotser said.
Que’s worked with its coffee supplier Erie Coffee Roasters to formulate its espresso and drip brew flavor which Quesenberry describes as full-body, bold and without bitterness. The Longmont coffee shop keeps its products local, offering pastries from Boulder-based bakeries Spruce Confections and La Biche, and ice cream from Glacier Homemade Ice Cream. Quesenberry, who has served as a mentor for the Longmont small business accelerator EforAll for two years, said it’s important to support local business.
Que’s has recently extended its hours until 8 p.m. to encourage its community gathering and have customers come play board games. The coffee house serves pastries, smoothies and desserts for those wanting a non-caffeinated option. Que’s also has live music, with jazz bands playing Friday nights and Sunday mornings.