New coffee, bakery, to-go store opens along Sunset Lake

Mindy Garrison, left, and Stephen Hollenbeck recently opened Cullaby Coffee on Sunset Beach Lane.

A new coffee shop, bakery, to-go restaurant and convenience store is opening on the approach to Sunset Beach.

Mindy Garrison and Stephen Hollenbeck held a soft opening over the weekend of Cullaby Coffee at the corner of Sunset Beach Lane and Lewis Road, near the main crossing of Sunset Lake. They replaced Bakery and Deli by the Sea.

Garrison and Hollenbeck are opening Cullaby Coffee from 8 a.m. to noon Saturday and Sunday while the two work other full-time jobs, gather a staff and finish setting up the to-go breakfast and lunch operation and convenience store. They plan to open in full May 1.

“We’ve got two gated communities and all the beach traffic, so that’s really the area we’re shooting for,” Garrison said.

The shop is also gathering customers from nearby bus traffic, too, Hollenbeck said. Cullaby Coffee sits kitty-corner from the Sunset Lake Resort & RV Park and across Lewis Road from a lakeside park.

Garrison, an early interventionist at Seaside Heights Elementary School, moved to Oregon a few years ago from Moses Lake, Washington. Her aunt and uncle own the building and had been planning their own restaurant but still live and raise cattle in eastern Washington, Garrison said. For the past couple of years, she has been planning her own operation, intending to purchase the building from her family.

“It was just me and my teenage daughter before I met Steve,” Garrison said. “So, it’s exciting. It’s a new opportunity. I won’t leave education just yet, but this is supposed to be our retirement project.”

Garrison met Hollenbeck while working at Auto Zone in Warrenton. Hollenbeck grew up in Astoria and had his first bakery experience in the former Danish Maid Bakery as a teenager. He spent 25 years as an auto body technician in Portland before recently moving back.

The two formed Cullaby Coffee in November and began organizing the business. They soon learned the building, located just off the roadway, could not accommodate seating without at least 16 off-street parking spaces, relegating them to a strictly to-go business. Along with the main convenience store, they are planning a walk-up window where people can order items such as breakfast burritos in the morning and sandwiches in the afternoon.

The shop will include about five varieties of breakfast burritos in the morning, with a broad selection of hot sauces, and sandwiches in the afternoon, Hollenbeck said. The shop bakes its own pastries and sources coffee from multiple roasters.

Open for only two days so far with minimal signage, Garrison and Hollenbeck have already noticed a trickle of locals coming into the coffee shop.

“The old guys are wondering when they can come in and hang out,” Garrison said with a laugh. “It’s pretty cool.”

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