Valentine Coffee to open shop at former Bella Cafe space in Third Ward

189 N. Milwaukee St. Photo by Google

The COVID-19 pandemic left Milwaukee’s Historic Third Ward nearly devoid of coffee shops, but the tide seems to be turning.

Milwaukee-based Valentine Coffee Co. is planning a new location at 189 N. Milwaukee St., according to a commercial alternation permit filed with the city. The corner storefront previously housed Bella Caffe, which closed last May after nearly 20 years in business.

Bella was one of five coffee shops in or near the Third Ward to shutter over the past year, joining Colectivo on East St. Paul Avenue, Stone Creek on South Barclay Street (just outside the Third Ward), Starbucks on North Water Street and Hudson Business Lounge on East Buffalo Street.

Renovations to the 1,500-square-foot space for Valentine Coffee will cost an estimated $50,000, according to the permit. Eppstein Uhen Architects is listed as the applicant. The five-story building is owned by Monarch Properties.

Founded in 2009, Valentine Coffee wholesales its coffee to restaurants, cafes, and retail outlets. The business currently operates a roasting facility and cafe in Milwaukee at 5918 W. Vilet Street and a second cafe location at Drexel Town Square in Oak Creek. Valentine’s owners Robb Kashevarof and Joe Gilsdorf were not immediately available to comment on plans for the Third Ward location.

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Maredithe has covered retail, restaurants, entertainment and tourism since 2018. Her duties as associate editor include copy editing, page proofing and managing work flow. Meyer earned a degree in journalism from Marquette University and still enjoys attending men’s basketball games to cheer on the Golden Eagles. Also in her free time, Meyer coaches high school field hockey and loves trying out new restaurants in Milwaukee.

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