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January 10, 2019

Meet The Haus Coffee Shop

The Haus Coffee Shop is owned by mother-son team, Rhonda Bartz and Michael Defelice, and fueled by a mutual passion for coffee and entrepreneurship. While going into business with your family may make some people cringe, these two have got it down.

“This isn’t for everyone,” Defelice said. “It can look like a reality show really quick, but my mother and I are a really great team.”

That teamwork often means they divide and conquer the responsibilities of owning and running the coffee shop. Bartz tackles the finances and handles networking through the local chamber of commerce, while Defelice possesses the majority of the coffee expertise and manages the shop. Regardless of their day-to-day tasks, the highlight of the work for both partners is the interactions they have with the people they serve.

“I think the best thing is coming to work every day, opening the doors and having people come in and smile at you,” Bartz said. “What we are offering is a caffeinated beverage, and everybody that wakes up, for the most part, always wants their caffeinated beverage. We provide them with something they need to get going on their day, and in return, we get a really appreciative smile. What better business to choose than when you make people happy?”

But as far as the actual coffee goes, it’s definitely about more than the caffeine. The Haus Coffee Shop uses ethically sourced coffee beans from all over the world, roasted by other local businesses: Zeal Coffee Roasters in Tampa, Florida, and Eastlick Coffee Company in Saint Petersburg, Florida.

“I like knowing that we’re supporting people from other places in the world,” Defelice said. “Most coffee comes from developing countries, so when you buy a cup of coffee, you’re not just supporting the coffee shop. You’re also supporting a farm out in Ecuador and a roaster in Tampa and so on. You’re really making a difference in a lot of folks’ lives when you buy coffee.”

While supporting others is certainly a perk of owning a coffee shop, the best part for Bartz and Defelice is that they get to work together on something that’s all their own.

“It takes a team effort to really make a small business thrive,” Bartz said. “Without my son’s help, this place would not have happened. It’s really been a good adventure over the past four years.”

That adventure has resulted in a lot of well-caffeinated customers. So if a quality cup of joe in a place that feels like home sounds like something you’d enjoy, head over to The Haus Coffee Shop. You’ll see just how good coffee can be.


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