In the revitalized neighborhood of Liberty Heights is a small grocery store peddling locally-sourced, organic food and, just outside, locals were drawn to an unassuming hand-built coffee cart--Three Pines Coffee—that operated there for the last several months. A labor of love from Nick Price (formerly of Handsome Coffee Roasters and Blacktop) and his partner, Meg Frampton, Three Pines Coffee was born out of two musicians’ adventures in Los Angeles and their decision to take those adventures back home, to Salt Lake City.
Frampton and Price originally moved to Los Angeles to pursue their musical careers. Price started working in coffee—at the now defunct Handsome Coffee Roasters—after his handyman skills landed him a job offer. Frampton hand-crafted jewelry and sold it at local art and craft fairs. Both continued to play music, but as Price got deeper into coffee, he and Frampton started to notice that a specialty coffee scene was budding back home each time they returned to Salt Lake City.
A few years ago, Nick and I moved to Los Angeles to pursue music careers. When we first arrived, we stopped at Handsome Coffee, a new specialty coffee shop located in the arts district.
During our visit, the owner happened to need a handy man. Nick's background fixing cars at his father's auto body shop made him just the man for the job. Perhaps due to Nick's willingness to be helpful, the owner offered Nick a position as a barista.
Nick didn't know much about coffee, but he learned quickly. I would visit him often at the coffee shop, happy to read for hours while sipping on one of the delicious beverages he learned to make.
My mother called me one afternoon. She always has crazy ideas to share with me. I usually take them with a grain of salt. "Meg, you should start an all-girl electronic band that performs only at national parks!" or "Meg, why don't you start an E-bay company that sells used prom dresses?!"
This time she had an idea that didn't involve clowns, sequins, or the use of live animals, so I listened closely. "Utah needs good coffee shops! You are a great businesswoman, and Nick has turned into quite the barista. How about the two of you start up your own coffee company?" Before I could come up with all my usual objections, a quiet voice inside me spoke up...