Jittery economy jolts Caffeine


Kelly Smith, co-owner of Caffeine, has moved the lunch business from its downtown location to St. Elmo’s Blacksmith Bistro and Bar. Photo by Rebecca W. Miller

The owners of Caffeine, a popular restaurant on ML King Boulevard, have relocated the establishment to their other restaurant, Blacksmith Bistro and Bar in St. Elmo, to ride out tough economic times.

“Caffeine’s closing isn’t really a close,” said co-owner Kelly Smith. “We’re looking at it as a little vacation, not a true absence. In the future, when the situation turns around, we would look for a return downtown.”

Smith said the decision to move was a combination of the older building and the economic times. She said it seems like more people are choosing to carry their lunches to work.

Smith said she hopes her customers will call and suggest their favorite items that they would like to see moved over. She assured that approximately 85 percent of the menu will be reflected in the combined lunch menus, including the turkey avocado and brie sandwich.

The menus will not be the only combination between the two restaurants.

“We have two staffs going into one,” said Smith, who will now be working alongside her husband and co-owner Blackwell Smith. “We didn’t want our staff, who have been so loyal, to lose their jobs.”

Smith said she is sad to be temporarily leaving downtown, but that on the plus side there will be three times the room for customers at Blacksmith Bistro and Bar.


Caffeine and Blacksmith Bistro and Bar are at 3914 St. Elmo Ave. For more information or to suggest Caffeine menu items to keep, contact Kelly Smith at caffeinecatt@gmai.... Pick up orders can be faxed to Blacksmith Bistro and Bar at 702-5462.

Smith said that even her loyal customers who won’t be able to travel for lunch can order through Dinner Delivered.

She said the restaurant will be closed on Monday, but open Saturdays and for brunch on Sundays.

“I think (St. Elmo) is a more exciting and upcoming area,” Smith said. “I think it is going to be the next area to explode.”


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