Goleta Coffee Co. staff.
From left, Goleta Coffee Co. co-owner Stacy Rebich Hespanha, manager Daria Kostyshkina, chef Martin Gomez and baristas/cashiers Carly Weisman and Nicole Bonilla show some of the menu items at Goleta Coffee Co., which will close on Feb. 15. (Joshua Molina / Noozhawk photo)

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It’s one last Valentine’s Day for the community and the Goleta Coffee Co.

The iconic coffee, salad and sandwich shop in the Turnpike Shopping Center will serve its last latte on Feb. 15, saying goodbye to 25 years of food, drink and conversation.

“I am going to miss the people, interacting with the people who have been coming here,” co-owner Stacy Rebich Hespanha said. “I have gotten to know a lot of our customers and made new friends, and just that chance to go to talk to new people everyday, I will really miss that.”

As big coffee chains have come and gone, Goleta Coffee Co. has remained a resilient home away from home. It’s a place where high school students studied, friends reconnected, secret lovers met and business people held meetings over a cup of coffee, in a quiet spot with a fireplace, away from the hustle and bustle of the Camino Real Marketplace or Calle Real. 

But that era is about to end.

Rebich Hespanha is closing the shop at 177 S. Turnpike Road and planning to go in a new direction with the opening of the Loca Vivant Kitchen, a wholesale vegan-friendly, gluten-free bakery, offering locally grown, prepared foods.

Loca Vivant is a blend of “locavore” and “bon vivant,” and the company promotes living well by eating local. Its mission is to create a community around food through local and seasonal sourcing, clean and nutritious ingredients, and advancing the well-being of people working in all aspects of the local food industry. The business will be an Employee Ownership Trust (EOT), meaning the majority of the profits will be distributed annually to employees, and a smaller portion will be reinvested in the business and mission.

Rebich Hespanha is looking for a home for the dozens of license plates from different states that make up a map of the country on the wall. She doesn’t want them going to a private home; she wants to see them in a public place, where people can see them, and where they can carry on the Goleta Coffee Co. history.

License plates make up a picture of the United States inside the Goleta Coffee Co.

License plates make up a picture of the United States inside the Goleta Coffee Co. The owner is looking for a new home for the dozens of license plates. (Joshua Molina / Noozhawk photo)

Goleta Coffee Co. will take pre-orders at discounted prices for its coffee beans through Feb. 6. The pre-orders will be available for pickup Feb. 8-15. Loca Vivant menu items will be available by pre-order for delivery or pickup from locations in Santa Barbara and Goleta. Once the wholesale kitchen is fully open, the business will offer its baked goods and menu items through collaboration with local small-business retailers.

On its final day, Goleta Coffee Co. will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Regular menu items will be available from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. A special happy hour and “show the love to your local coffee shop & its employees” celebration is scheduled from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. All proceeds from the day will go toward the cost of covering severance pay for the employees. Many décor items will also be available, with suggested donations going to the employee severance fund.

“We value our staff and believe offering severance pay, although untraditional in this industry, is the right thing to do,” Rebich Hespanha said. “We hope you’ll support our staff and celebrate our last day through this effort.”

Lighthouse Coffee plans to open in the shopping center and, according to terms with the shopping center’s management, only one coffee shop can be open in the strip mall. 

“Although the shopping center management has chosen a new coffee shop to operate in the Turnpike Center, we are optimistic and excited about the future for Loca Vivant Kitchen,” Rebich Hespanha said in a news release.

Letter Perfect for Sale

Over on Coast Village Road, another business with history is in transition. 

Letter Perfect Santa Barbara, a specialty studio and store “specializing in one-of-a-kind design, products, branding, marketing and etiquette advice,” is for sale after 38 years. 

“There is a saying that there is no good time to have a baby. Along those lines, I would also say that there is no good time to sell what is akin to your own child,” Letter Perfect said in an email to its custormers. 

Letter Perfect, 1150-A Coast Village Road, offers custom design and art for wedding invitations, party invitations, business branding, and monograms. It also provides wedding favors, wedding save-the-date cards, custom wedding suites, custom wedding rehearsal invitations, custom wedding menus and wedding invitation calligraphy.

The company had an inquiry already for a coffee shop, but the ownership would like the new buyer to maintain the place as a stationery, design and gift shop, if possible. For inquires, email personryan@aol.com.

Broad Street Oyster Opens

At 418 State St. in Santa Barbara, Malibu-based Broad Street Oyster Co. has opened a restaurant that serves lobster rolls and other seafood items.

The restaurant is open every day from “lunch until late.”

Broad Street Oyster Co. was founded by Christopher Tompkins inside a Malibu strip mall. 

On the menu are lobster rolls, urchins, caviar and other speciality items.

Jeannine’s Break

Jeannine’s Restaurant & Bakery, 1253 Coast Village Road, is temporarily closed for repairs. 

The popular spot closed Jan. 3 for renovations and repairs. Owner Alison Hardey told Noozhawk that she plans to reopen on Saturday.

In the meantime, locations exist in Goleta, midtown and on Cabrillo Boulevard.

Bob’s Well Bread Halts Temporarily

The owners of Bob’s Well Bread in Los Alamos and Ballard have decided to temporarily close both locations because of COVID-19 concerns.

In the interest of caution & w/ the safety of our staff & customers in mind, we’ve decided to close both locations for a week. We appreciate your support during these ever changing times. We hope to welcome you back on Thurs 1/27 & will keep you posted w/ updates #BobsWellBread pic.twitter.com/MTgsI7kndy

— Bob’s Well Bread (@BobsWellBread) January 18, 2022

Santa Barbara Snack Shack 

The Santa Barbara Snack Shack at the Santa Barbara Harbor is on a temporary break. 

“Due to the recent outbreak of the virus in Santa Barbara, we decided to go on our first vacation in 20 years from the store,” the company wrote in a letter on the window. “It has been a privilege to serve you during that time. We look forward to our return.”

The Snack Shop is at 305 W. Cabrillo Blvd.

Isla Vista Tacos

There’s a new taco shop in Isla Vista. 

Texas Tacos is now open at 910 Embarcardeo Del Norte.

The taco stand is inside Dublin’s Sports Grill. The restaurant says it serves “Texas-style breakfast tacos.”

It’s open from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday.

New Headquarters for Santa Barbara Vascular Specialists

Santa Barbara-based vascular surgery practice Santa Barbara Vascular Specialists has a new headquarters at 2621 De La Vina St. in Santa Barbara. 

“We’re honored to serve the Santa Barbara community from our new location,” founder and lead surgeon Dr. Kevin Casey said in a news release. “The space will better accommodate patients as it offers additional in-office procedures that will no longer require hospital admission. We’re looking forward to continuing to provide the highest quality in vascular surgery to our community.”

The company also has added three surgeons to its team: Dr. Daniel Alfson (Santa Barbara), Dr. Edward Li (Santa Barbara) and Dr. Sydney Guo (Ventura County Vascular Specialists in Oxnard and Ventura).

The company opened its doors in 2019 and treats patients for peripheral artery disease, abdominal aorta aneurysms, carotid artery disease, varicose veins, lower extremity edema, hemodialysis access and thoracic outlet syndrome.

Valerie Cantella Book-Signing

Valerie Cantella

Valerie Cantella (Courtesy photo)

Valerie Cantella, an award-winning public relations professional, will sign copies of her new book, “Off-script,” from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 13 at the Goleta Coffee Co., 177 S. Turnpike Road.

Cantella, a former public relations officer for the City of Goleta and the Santa Barbara County Education Office, wrote the book in a year. It’s a memoir, and it tells the story of how “a young girl dreams of a perfect life — marriage, children and a career — her happily ever after.”

But “when a life-threatening medical condition, an alcoholic husband, and a traumatic special-needs adoption shatter that dream, there are only two choices — crumble or change the narrative. Valerie learned to embrace the unimaginable to create an extraordinary life.”

Pre-order the book here, and read the first chapter here.

Noozhawk staff writer Joshua Molina can be reached at jmolina@noozhawk.com. Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.