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The Fuller Cup


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Topping It Off

The Fuller Cup Keeps Locals Fueled Up

Writer / Lois Tomaszewski
Photographer / Jubilee Edgell

Saving another long-standing downtown Bourbon building is as palatable as the coffee brewed and served at The Fuller Cup, Jeff and Jayne Fuller’s coffee shop on Main Street in Bourbon. The Fullers bought the former Bourbon News Mirror building with the idea of renovating it. At that time, they had no plans for the building other than to make it suitable for a business – any business.The Fuller Cup

There was interest from someone who wanted to rent the building to open a coffee shop there. The Fullers began to ready the building for that endeavor. When that plan fell through, the Fullers dove into the coffee-shop business, putting to use all the renovations and modifications for a coffee shop operation they had already added to the building.

“We didn’t know anything about coffee,” Jayne says. “We have learned a lot.”

First, there was much to be done to get the empty shell of a building in shape, even before the idea of a coffee shop came up. The building, built in the 1800s, had been slated for demolition, the Fullers say. When they purchased it, the back of the building and the floors were missing. There was no electricity, and it was just an empty shell. After an engineer checked out the structure, it was considered sound enough to renovate.

“I give Jeff a lot of the credit,” Jayne says. “We did a lot of the work ourselves.”

Contractors were hired for the wiring, plumbing, HVAC and other important tasks. With its history, the Fullers were tasked with restoring an old-time feel for the structure. The reclaimed wood walls, brickwork, wood floors and other design details give the interior an 1800s look.

“Everything on the inside is new except the frame,” Jeff says. “We wanted to save it for the community.”

A patio was added between The Fuller Cup and the Fullers’ other downtown business, The Standard. Jayne says a metal detector located old newspaper typesetting letters – remnants from the newspaper operation.

A private room was incorporated into the design of the coffee shop. Located in the back, a large conference-style table provides an ideal spot for gatherings of all kinds, from parties to business meetings. It is just one more feature that makes this reclaimed space function well for the community.

“We want to be that place where people gather,” Jayne says. The atmosphere mirrors their adjacent business.

The Fuller CupTo make sure their vision was in tune with what consumers expect from a coffee shop, the Fullers visited other coffee shops in the area. Each one was different – some were trendy, some were brightly decorated, and others were warm and welcoming in their color schemes. The Fullers opted for a style that would reflect their own aesthetic, appeal to their customers and fit in with Bourbon’s vibe.

They also began their education in all things coffee, which has been a new and exciting learning experience. Jeff, Jayne says, still drinks drip coffee, and learning how to operate the espresso machine was like taking on a science project, she says.

Partnering with Toccoa Coffee Roasters out of Mishawaka provided expertise in brewing various coffee beverages such as espresso and lattes, and helped in training the staff. Now, Jayne says, her staff members are confident enough to create new hot and cold beverages, take ownership of the day-to-day operations, and even help to determine what flavors to feature in different seasons, such as pumpkin spice, peppermint and cinnamon for the fall and winter.

In addition to the usual coffee favorites, The Fuller Cup offers frozen hot chocolate, hot chocolate, frappés and more. Customers can also indulge in house-made cinnamon rolls and sweet rolls, as well as doughnuts and bagels.

A “take a book, leave a book” feature encourages the community to read while enjoying their coffee, and includes a selection of children’s books. Otherwise, customers are encouraged to simply relax.The Fuller Cup

“We are proud that we have made a space that is cozy,” Jayne says.

Jeff agrees. “We want people to enjoy it,” he says.

The Fuller Cup is located at 208 North Main Street in Bourbon. For more information, call 574-780-9947.


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