It’s six o’clock on a Friday morning. The early a.m. sun is painting the sky pink and purple as it pokes up over the horizon, and traffic on Broad Street is picking up as workers begin arriving in downtown Chattanooga. Waiting for them in a small lot at 3008 Broad Street, next to the Twice the Ice machine, is a small blue trailer with the words “Sunnyside Cup” splashed across both sides and one end. If the cute name doesn’t tell customers what’s for sale, the delicious aroma of fresh brewed coffee will.
A white Jeep Liberty pulls up along one side, and a smiling Charity Martin thrusts her smile and cheery “Good morning” out the window.
The gentleman inside the vehicle places and pays for his order, and within a few minutes, Martin hands him a steaming cup. It might be a warm June morning, but he needs his brew.
“We’re selling convenience,” Martin says, “and a great cup of coffee.”
Sunnyside Up is also selling iced espresso drinks and a variety of non-coffees ranging from chai tea lattes to hot and iced teas, if anyone is interested.
A lot of people are interested. Since launching in May, Sunnyside Cup has sold over 3,000 Americanos, Cafe Lattes, Cafe Mochas, Cafe White Mochas, Cappuccinos, and more. Many of them were served swirling with coconut milk, or sweetened with one of several syrups, or made “cafe breve,” a milk-based espresso drink using a steamed half-and-half mixture of milk and cream instead of milk.
Sunnyside Cup gets its bean from MayFly Coffee, a roasting company on Signal Mountain. The latter company’s website says, “We are focused on our products from the time they are ripening on the branch [to when they are] processed at the mill, dried under the sun, and lovingly roasted at our shop.”
Martin and the rest of the “Cup Crew,” as they’re identified on the backs of their t-shirts, like to keep things local. To that end, they also serve what Martin calls a delicious frittata, baked biweekly by Dish T’Pass, a catering and cooking company located in downtown Chattanooga. Muffins and scones are also on the menu.
Sunnyside Cup is owned and operated by Martin and her sister, Melody Kobernik. The two were born and raised in Alaska, and spent summers with their grandparents in Seattle, Wash. - the epicenter for all things coffee. “Coffee huts are a mainstay for busy commuters in the Pacific Northwest,” says Martin. “When we go home to visit family, we regularly visit our favorite coffee huts, and love the convenience of getting a cup to go!”
Martin moved to Lookout Mountain, Ga., in 1998 to attend Covenant College. Kobernik and her husband arrived three years ago. “After we moved here, we quickly started wishing for a coffee hut!” Martin says.
The sisters do offer a lively experience. Serving coffee and pastries with a smile, they pride themselves on knowing their customers and keeping business local and loyal.
Martin says the overwhelming amount of community support that has been offered to Sunnyside Cup has encouraged her and her sister. “Chattanooga has been very friendly and supportive in our venture,” she says.
Sunnyside Cup’s quick and convenient drive thru coffees are available Monday through Friday from 6 a.m. to 1 p.m.
For more information, contact Sunnyside Cup on Facebook.
To see more photos, pick up a copy of the Hamilton County Herald.