cream or sugar.
On a sleepy strip of Indianola Avenue in Clintonville sits a coffee shop – in the truest sense of the term. There are no couches, fire places, stools, tables or Wi-Fi. There is no pastry case, stylized drinks or racks of magazines.
Instead, there is just coffee – black, or with cream or sugar.
This is the home of Yeah, Me Too. There is a coffee roaster in one corner, local artwork splashed on the walls and a counter across the small storefront lined with a few baked goods and a French press. Co-owners Sam Brown and Jovan Karcic started the coffee business to make money so they could pursue their musical interests. Brown is a member of the Columbus punk rock band, New Bomb Turks, and is involved in numerous other bands.
“We just want to have the flexibility to play music and make art,” Brown said.
New Bomb Turks’ bassist and Wexner Center Store Manger Matt Reber has been friends with Brown and Karcic since before they opened the coffee shop. Reber said when Brown started with the New Bomb Turks in 1999 he took a French press on band tours. Reber said Brown and Karcic started Yeah, Me Too because they were interested in working with gourmet coffee and they particularly liked French press coffee.
“I can’t brew my own coffee like they brew it,” Reber said. “They do something very specific very well.”
Located at 3005 Indianola Ave., Yeah, Me Too serves its roasted coffee only two ways: hot or cold. Customers have the option of adding cream or sugar to their coffee but nothing else. Brown and Karcic want their business to be as simple as possible, Brown said.
Yeah, Me Too got its name from a record that Brown and a partner made. Brown and Karcic aren’t coffee geek guys or business men, they just wanted to start their own place, Brown said. Without advertisements, the co-owners are seeing the shop grow slowly.
“We aren’t business guys,” Brown said. “We aren’t interested in saturating the market.”
Brown and Karcic keep the business focused on one thing.
“Our business is so simple,” Brown said. “You just come in and get a cup of coffee.”
Not everything the coffee shop offers meets customers’ expectations. Brown said it’s hard to get people in the door because they are used to getting everything they need from one location.
“I think it’s hard to ask people these days to go to multiple places to get things,” he said.
Brown’s largest concern is that people don’t find what they want with Yeah, Me Too. He isn’t running a traditional coffee shop with area to study or couches for seating, so some customers are disappointed.
“There are certain things that people expect from a coffee shop that we don’t provide,” Brown said.
Clintonville resident Jamie Hayden describes Yeah, Me Too as quaint and quirky because it’s different than a lot of coffee shops. Along with her friends, Hayden keeps returning to Yeah, Me Too because it’s convenient and cheap.
“I don’t have to pay $5 for a cup of coffee,” Hayden said. “It’s cheap and it’s good.”
Brown said starting and maintaining the business has been an interesting experience because they are building it from the ground up. They want to see the business grow naturally without advertisement.
“It’s all word of mouth,” Brown said. “We are just trying to let it grow as organically as possible.”
The co-owners make all their coffee with a French press, which was their preferred method of making coffee when they started the business. Brown said Columbus has nothing like Yeah, Me Too, so he thought people would enjoy something new.
“I am most proud of how good our coffee is,” Brown said. “The whole reason we are here is because our coffee is good.”
The owners buy their coffee beans through a coffee brokerage and then roast their own beans, Brown said.
“The focus of the place is that we roast our own coffee,” Brown said. “This is the only place you can get our coffee.”
Although Clintonville residents frequently stop in, Brown said he has also seen a lot of new customers lately.
“I really like new people coming in,” Brown said. “I’m really surprised when people come in and ask how long we have been here.”
Yeah, Me Too regular Brayden Volk works in Clintonville and stops to get a cup of coffee three or four times a week.
“They have great blends of coffee and the French press,” Volk said.
Although Volk said seating is a disadvantage for the shop, it doesn’t keep him from suggesting Yeah, Me Too’s coffee.
“People should stop in and get a cup,” Volk said.