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We’re bringing specialty coffee and wine to DC's East End and need your help to complete our dream.
87 backers pledged $15,302 to help bring this project to life.
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About

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$15,302

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The Ministry is a coffee and wine bar concept founded by sister-team Elisa and Lourdes (Lulu) Bennaton. Inspired by early memories of long conversations and home cooking with her abuelita, Elisa had a strong desire to create a space that is meant to be unrushed and shift the focus to great company and quality food, coffee and wine. While Lulu has a solid communications background, Elisa has extensive business experience, a culinary degree from Le Cordon Bleu and management expertise in food and hospitality from when she lived in London.

Our coffee and wine bar is located at 601 New Jersey Avenue NW in East End DC, nestled within the beautiful landmarks of Union Station, Capitol Hill and Georgetown Law. We will serve coffee from local roaster, Ceremony Coffee Roasters and thoughtfully selected wines from all over the world, accompanied by internationally inspired baked goods, small plates, and meals.

Location - Map
Location - Map

AN ATYPICAL COFFEEHOUSE AND WINE BAR

At The Ministry, we celebrate the rituals of coffee and wine that bookend our days; the traditions that fuel our lives in work and play. Coffee and wine are intrinsically connected to the earth and the people who grow it, but are turned into conversations and memories around a table. Our space is dedicated to everyone who lives and works locally and those that have journeyed from afar, who currently call DC their home. 

We are cool, casual, playful, chic and unafraid of being different. We have combined our heritage and European influences to create a space that is vibrant, friendly and a little stylish demonstrating that exceptional coffee and wine can also have topnotch service and design. 

Layout
Layout

Whether it's taking you somewhere you have never been before or revisiting a place that rekindles great memories, we’d like to take you there and make you part of our journey.

Construction is underway at our new home with our soft opening scheduled for end of June 2018! But we need your help to finish the final touches.

Mid Construction
Mid Construction

GOALS:

We have raised most of the money we need through private investment, but we are looking to the 'glocal' community to help us with the final opening expenses. Our crowdfunding goal is to raise an additional $15,000 to cover the costs of our patio, local mural artist and the finishing touches that will truly make The Ministry a neighborhood institution. 

Outdoor Plan
Outdoor Plan

REWARDS:

We have put a great deal of thought to creating different rewards for your support. Our perks are fun, practical and have been thoughtfully created for you to enjoy and become part of our community's lifestyle. Prizes range from custom designed art prints, coffee mugs, t-shirts (see below), and unique tasting experiences, to running you own secret code day.

The Ministry's T-shirts
The Ministry's T-shirts
The Ministry's Custom Art Prints
The Ministry's Custom Art Prints
The Ministry's Drip Coffee Mugs
The Ministry's Drip Coffee Mugs

Beyond being practical and beautiful our rewards also help fund projects that address issues close to our heart. The CreatedCo, our coffee wares supplier donates a portion of profits to help bring clean water to those in need around the world, while our collaborating partner District Mugs works to empower the homeless in Washington DC.

Our co-owner, Elisa, teaching a District Mugs business workshop
Our co-owner, Elisa, teaching a District Mugs business workshop

Press

We’ve already had lots of great buzz and our neighbors and friends are highly anticipating our opening. 

https://www.popville.com/2017/09/the-ministry-coffee-and-wine-bar-coming-to-601-new-jersey-ave-nw/

https://www.popville.com/2018/04/the-ministry-coffee-and-wine-bar-post-liquor-license-placard-near-the-capitol-union-station/

https://dc.eater.com/2018/5/21/17376058/ministry-dc-coffee-wine-opening

Edible DC
Edible DC

Risks and challenges

While there are risks with any new venture, founder and co-owner Elisa has many years of hospitality industry experience, her sister/co-owner, Lulu, is a solid sounding board and they have sought counsel from professionals in all areas of the project. We’ve worked with an experienced team of designers, branding experts, contractors, coffee roasters, and chefs in the city (along with many others) to ensure that no detail has been forgotten.

The biggest risks for us now are a) not being able to provide the community with the additional option of outdoor seating, which would in turn diminish the number of guests who can experience our offerings and b) limiting the project's finish touches, leaving us with a space that isn’t quite as thoughtful or that resonates with the brand we have worked hard to create.

While we already have our Landlord’s blessing for outdoor seating the biggest challenges for The Ministry are covering additional design fees, contractor expenses, permit fees and getting those additional permits submitted. The timeframe for most permit approval in the District is usually long, while training all the staff to open a restaurant. Training takes lots of time and energy while the bills keep piling up, as any restaurateur can tell you.

Should we not reach our campaign goal we will have to wait until we’re generating revenue and are up and running to submit our permits to the District. This means our patrons may not experience our offerings on our patio until the end of the year. It would be regretful to miss sitting outside during some of the loveliest times of the year like end of summer and fall, which truly make the nations' capital an enjoyable place.

We are counting on our friends, neighbors and this campaign to support us as we get these final details settled to continue on the right foot. We’ve gained lots of trust in our project already, and we hope we can gain yours too!

We'd like to take this opportunity to especially thank Chhorvy Ly, Oyku Hannah, Jemar Souza, Ciji Wagner, Ceremony Coffee Roasters, Ronnie Haas, Jamila Rowser, Vinny Mwano, District Mugs, Erissa Mann, our family, old friends, new friends and soon to be friends (across the world) for the unconditional support they have given us to make this dream a reality.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 5 or more About US$ 5

    The Messenger

    A little goes a long way just by spreading the word.

    Includes:
    • Your name on our Ambassador's Page
    • Social media shout out
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    The Entrepreneur

    For the creatives, gold hearted and risk takers who love supporting others.

    Includes:
    • Social media shout out
    • Your name on our Ambassador's Page
    • Pin Buttons
    • Coffee Art Print
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    The Assistant

    The invaluable asset to every organization.

    Includes:
    • Your name on our Ambassador's Page
    • Social media shout out
    • Pin Buttons
    • Coffee Art Print
    • Wine Art Print
    • Complimentary Drip Coffee
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    The Academic

    Those working or studying in educational institutions.

    Includes:
    • Your name on our Ambassador's Page
    • Social media shout out
    • Pin Buttons
    • Coffee Art Print
    • Wine Art Print
    • Complimentary Drip Coffee
    • Mini Memo Pad
    • Custom coasters
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    The Academic

    Those working or studying in educational institutions.

    Includes:
    • Your name on our Ambassador's Page
    • Social media shout out
    • Pin Buttons
    • Coffee Art Print
    • Wine Art Print
    • Complimentary Drip Coffee
    • Mini Memo Pad
    • Custom coasters
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    The Enthusiast

    The cheerleader of all great things.

    Includes:
    • Your name on our Ambassador's Page
    • Social media shout out
    • Pin Buttons
    • Coffee Art Print
    • Wine Art Print
    • Complimentary Drip Coffee
    • Mini Memo Pad
    • Custom coasters
    • Tote Bag
    • Wine tumblers
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    Pledge US$ 150 or more About US$ 150

    The Enthusiast

    The cheerleader of all great things.

    Includes:
    • Your name on our Ambassador's Page
    • Social media shout out
    • Pin Buttons
    • Coffee Art Print
    • Wine Art Print
    • Complimentary Drip Coffee
    • Mini Memo Pad
    • Custom coasters
    • Tote Bag
    • Wine tumblers
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    The Diplomat

    The specialist and skillful individual of international affairs.

    Includes:
    • Your name on our Ambassador's Page
    • Social media shout out
    • Pin Buttons
    • Coffee Art Print
    • Wine Art Print
    • Complimentary Drip Coffee
    • Mini Memo Pad
    • Custom coasters
    • Tote Bag
    • Wine tumblers
    • T-shirt
    • Personalized Coffee Break, with owner and 2 guests
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    The Resident

    For those planning to make us their home away from home.

    Includes:
    • Your name on our Ambassador's Page
    • Social media shout out
    • Pin Buttons
    • Coffee Art Print
    • Wine Art Print
    • Complimentary Drip Coffee
    • Mini Memo Pad
    • Custom coasters
    • Tote Bag
    • Wine tumblers
    • T-shirt
    • Personalized Coffee Break, with owner and 2 guests
    • Signature Mug
    • Seasonal Coffee Bag, grinded to your brew of choice
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    Pledge US$ 1,450 or more About US$ 1,450

    The Connoisseur

    The expert in all matters of taste.

    *Tasting can be transferrable to a person of your choice.

    Includes:
    • Your name on our Ambassador's Page
    • Social media shout out
    • Pin Buttons
    • Coffee Art Print
    • Wine Art Print
    • Complimentary Drip Coffee
    • Mini Memo Pad
    • Custom coasters
    • Tote Bag
    • Wine tumblers
    • T-shirt
    • Signature Mug
    • Seasonal Coffee Bag, grinded to your brew of choice
    • Personalized food and beverage tasting experience, with 5 guests
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    Pledge US$ 2,500 or more About US$ 2,500

    The Globe Trotter

    The frequent traveler who journeys the world all year round.

    *Any tasting and event can be transferrable to a person of your choice.

    Includes:
    • Your name on our Ambassador's Page
    • Social media shout out
    • Pin Buttons
    • Coffee Art Print
    • Wine Art Print
    • Complimentary Drip Coffee
    • Mini Memo Pad
    • Custom coasters
    • Tote Bag
    • Wine tumblers
    • T-shirt
    • Signature Mug
    • Seasonal Coffee Bag, grinded to your brew of choice
    • Personalized food and beverage tasting experience, with 5 guests
    • Sip & Paint for a Cause Event with District Mugs, with 9 guests
    • Name a toast from our toast menu
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    Pledge US$ 5,000 or more About US$ 5,000

    The Lobbyist

    That professional influencer rallying for a specific cause.

    *Any tasting or events can be transferrable to a person of your choice.

    Includes:
    • Your name on our Ambassador's Page
    • Social media shout out
    • Pin Buttons
    • Coffee Art Print
    • Wine Art Print
    • 10× Complimentary Drip Coffee
    • Mini Memo Pad
    • Custom coasters
    • Tote Bag
    • Wine tumblers
    • T-shirt
    • Signature Mug
    • Seasonal Coffee Bag, grinded to your brew of choice
    • Personalized food and beverage tasting experience, with 5 guests
    • Sip & Paint for a Cause with District Mugs, with 11 guests
    • Wine Bingo Evening, with 7 guests
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    0 backers
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    Pledge US$ 9,500 or more About US$ 9,500

    The CEO

    To us, they are the Chief EXCELLENT Officer. They lead by example and enjoy mentoring passionate, dedicated individuals across the board.

    *Tastings & events can be transferable to a person of your choice.

    Includes:
    • Your name on our Ambassador's Page
    • Social media shout out
    • 12× Pin Buttons
    • Coffee Art Print
    • Wine Art Print
    • Mini Memo Pad
    • 10× Custom coasters
    • Tote Bag
    • 10× Wine tumblers
    • T-shirt
    • Signature Mug
    • 10× Seasonal Coffee Bag, grinded to your brew of choice
    • Sip & Paint for a Cause with District Mugs, with 11 guests
    • Wine Bingo Evening, with 7 guests
    • Full year of 1 complimentary beverage of your choice per day
    • Code Day: share w/ friends for one free drink, p/p for one day
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    0 backers
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Funding period

- (30 days)