Inside Brakeman’s Coffee, the cute little coffee shop making a big splash in downtown Matthews

Inside Brakeman’s Coffee, the cute little coffee shop making a big splash in downtown Matthews
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The town of Matthews welcomed a new local coffee shop earlier this month.

Brakeman’s Coffee & Supply, which operated as a front lawn pop-up shop throughout construction, opened the doors to its refurbished 1925-era home on July 1.

For a small business focused on encouraging customers to metaphorically pump the brakes on life and enjoy a slower pace, the cafe has been abuzz with activity.

I popped in on a Tuesday afternoon and was met with an almost completely packed house. There was a line at the register, every indoor seat and stool had been claimed, and even in the peak afternoon heat, people had settled in at tables on the front lawn and back patio.

“Matthews knows something I don’t,” I thought.

Demand for a downtown coffee shop has been high since Dilworth Coffee closed its Matthews Station location across the street late last year.

And it would appear Brakeman’s has met that demand. They’ve seen consistent support since first introducing their concept with a Saturday morning pop-up espresso cart on the front lawn.

People lining up for one of Brakeman’s Saturday morning pop-ups via Facebook

The menu features hot and cold coffees and teas, milkshakes, smoothies and baked goods.

Beans are sourced from local roaster Summit Coffee as well as Greenville, SC-based Methodical Coffee, and local baker Whisk and Wood provides cookies, brownies and pastries.

So far, the lavender latte has been a standout signature along with the cold brew hibiscus tea.

Cold brew hibiscus tea and a lavender latte

Because Brakeman’s is located in an old house, it has a unique floor plan with cozy nooks around every corner.

There’s even a kid-friendly play room under the stairs and a couple nearby seats so parents can hang close.

Brakeman’s Coffee is open Monday through Saturday 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. You’ll find it at 225 N. Trade Street, Matthews NC 28105. It’s about 30 minutes from Charlotte.

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