Getting caffeinated, cozy at Cafe Allenatore

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Sophomore public relations majors Grant Daignault, Trysten Loos and Sarah Tuggle enjoy food and drinks at Cafe Allenatore, the newest coffee shop to open on Third Street in Marquette. Photo by Emma Case

Isabelle Tavares

“Coffee is not a beverage, but a lifestyle,” said owner of Cafe Allenatore Sasa Kostic. “If you do not have 20 minutes for coffee, then you don’t have 20 minutes for your life.”

The smell of roasting coffee wafted from the hole-in-the-wall that is Cafe Allenatore. Nestled on Third Street in Marquette, the new coffee shop remains low-profile, for now. Guests experience a cozy atmosphere, which is exactly what Kostic and his wife wish to provide. Warm lighting, exposed brick, wallpaper donning photos of famed movie starlets,and a small colorful globe lettered “laughter makes the world turn” is Kostic’s vision that has come to life.

Since “Allenatore” is Italian for “coach,” the name is a tribute to Kostic coaching the Power Soccer Academy in Marquette. Kostic strives to make consistent coffee, every time, to ensure guest satisfaction. Popular menu items include the European cappuccino, Greek frappe, straight espresso and Serbian-style crepes. The idea for this European-style cafe was born out of the passion Kostic and his wife have for coffee, as her family has been in the business in Europe.

“I don’t drink anything except coffee and water,” Kostic said.

Since opening on Jan. 16, Kostic said it has already exceeded their expectations, gaining regular guests. Kostic has worked in many corners of the world, including Cyprus where he had the opportunity to learn from professionals in the coffee industry.

In 2013, Kostic had an experience while working in Brazil that got something brewing in him, he said. Every morning before class, Kostic would get coffee from the same shop.

“The first morning I started a conversation with the owner. The second day I came to the shop again, and on the third day the owner had set out coffee for me on the table before I had arrived because he saw that I enjoyed the coffee,” Kostic explained with a smile.

An open, common area adorned with plush red loveseats begs for guests to chat and connect with one another. This is exactly the aura Kostic wished to bring with him from conversation- minded European culture.

“In Europe, if you asked for coffee to-go, they’re going to look at you like you’re crazy,” Kostic said.

In lieu of self-promotion, Kostic opts for a minimal social media presence, allowing the guests’ experience to speak for themselves.

“If people are happy and satisfied, they are going to talk about it,” Kostic said. “Marquette is small, so I don’t feel like I need to majorly advertise the shop.”

Kostic creates and sustains relationships with guests through a point system in which after spending $20 there total, guests get 25 percent off every future purchase, he said.

“We are not a corporation, but a small family business open for everyone,” Kostic said.

In the future Kostic would like to hold intimate events such as the occasional poetry or violin night.

Kostic can be found socializing with guests when the shop is open 8:30 a.m to 9 p.m Monday through Saturday, and 10 a.m to 9 p.m on Sunday.