El Cafecito Mobile Espresso Bar - 1 of 3, The Build
El Cafecito Mobile Espresso Bar - 1 of 3, The Build
Can I get some good coffee without leaving the site? The El Cafecito Mobile Espresso Bar is being built, so you'll have to wait...a bit
Can I get some good coffee without leaving the site? The El Cafecito Mobile Espresso Bar is being built, so you'll have to wait...a bit Read more
About this project
We are not reinventing the wheel. There have been coffee trailers on the island before, there are some right now, El Cafecito is much more. El Cafecito is a Mobile Espresso bar that will serve the best cold brew and espresso based specialty beverages.
There has always been demand for good coffee at markets, fairs, and outdoor events. Some of this demand has been met by current vendors offering brewed or percolator coffee, however, the demand for higher quality coffee remains unmet. El Cafecito will meet this demand by fielding a purpose built unit equipped with brewer, espresso maker and cold brew dispenser.
To achieve our goal, we have divided the project into 3 phases. The first will be to obtain approvals, and to finish the build of the unit. The second will be to outfit the unit, and to test it. The third will be to obtain permits and licences, accessorize the unit, field it, advertise and book it. At the completion of each phase, we will be able to evaluate progress, and to adjust plans for the work needed in the following phase.
- Phase 1 of 3, The Build
We have purchased a shell on a trailer that needs to be completed. It needs a new roof, modifications to the openings, a housing for the genset, new flooring, cabinetry, counter tops, cupboards, plumbing, and painting. These are the tasks that your contribution will help complete.
Before putting hammer to nail, we need to design and obtain approval for construction from Vancouver Island Health Authority (VIHA). The unit has been previously inspected and found to be suitable. Working together with VIHA, we will submit a proposal and modify it as instructed, throughout the life of the project, to meet all the requirements and ensure approval.
- The present roof is not adequate for road travel, It’ll need to be replaced.
- For a better layout of the equipment, we will close off the serving opening beside the access door. The passenger side and rear openings will need to be lowered for safer hand off of hot beverages and to improve the interaction between server and customer.
- The current electrical system is only set up to hook up to shore power. It is necessary to equip the unit with a generator of sufficient capacity to ensure independent operational capability. A housing needs to be built over the tongue of the trailer to house and protect the generator.
- In the interior, the current partial vinyl flooring needs to extend partially up the walls to make cleaning easier and to minimize the filtration of water to the underlying structure.
- There are no cabinets, counter tops or cupboards in the unit at the moment, they all need to be installed. The current placement of the sinks may have to change for better work flow.
- We have two tanks for water, one for potable water and the other for grey water. After installing the cabinetry, moving the sinks and determining the position of all the equipment, we can install the plumbing and determine the placement of the necessary pumps.
- To finish the envelope, we will need to undercoat it, prime the exterior and paint the interior.
- Phase 2 of 3, The Outfitting
We have a great deal of the necessary equipment. We need pumps, another fridge or two, grinder, brewer, kegs and dispenser, cup dispensers, generator, ventilation, POS, and other necessary equipment. At this stage we will also procure final permitting and licensing.
- Phase 3 of 3, The Fielding
We have elcafecito.ca and the associated social media accounts. We need to wrap the trailer and its tractor. We need bistro sets, umbrellas, canopies, sandwich boards, etc. We need an initial stocking of all ingredients, consumables, and supplies. During this phase we will also book the unit at local fairs and markets.
Risks and challenges
As with any start up, the biggest risk is not reaching the required sales targets to make a go of the venture. This can be mitigated by tightly controlling costs, and by using a pricing strategy that does not stray too far from the prevailing market but also demands an acceptable premium for the convenience and quality of the offering.
Other risks include failing to obtain the Vancouver Island Health Authority (VIHA) Permit to Operate, and failing to obtain a Business Licence from the City of Nanaimo. The way to mitigate these risks, is to observe all the requirements during every step of the process. We will collaborate with VIHA and City Hall to meet the requirements set out in regulations and by-law to ensure the issuance of the Permit to Operate and a Business Licence.
A personal risk is the prolonged absences necessary to attend the markets and fairs up and down the mid island. This can be minimized by careful scheduling and concentrating on the immediate vicinity of Nanaimo. If it becomes necessary, the towing unit will be outfitted for sleeping.
I am proficient at coffee and looking after the customer, I am also very good at administering resources and managing the supply chain. Although not unfamiliar with which end of a hammer to hold, my construction knowledge is not sufficient to pull off this project on my own. I will need to find friends and family that can share their knowledge with me, occasionally teach me how to do something specific, and, from time to time, I will need an extra pair of hands. There will always be a need to get professional help for the more complicated parts of the project. We anticipate Phase 1 will be the most like time we'll need this help.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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