See inside new independent Sunderland coffee shop that offers an escape from the daily grind

A new independent coffee shop is offering an escape from the daily grind.

Thursday, 17th October 2019, 12:26 pm
Updated Friday, 18th October 2019, 3:58 pm

Around £15,000, and two months of extensive refurbishments, has been ploughed into transforming the former Ironing Basket shop in Durham Road into Grinder Coffee Co.

Owning a coffee shop has long been the dream of owner Michael Curtis and, after spotting the unit had become available, he was able to turn his vision into reality.

Its location near the University Metro Station, and en route to the city centre, means the new business is picking up plenty of passing trade and Michael says he’s pleased with how Grinder has been received in its first month.

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Owner Michael Curtis of the newly opened Grinder Coffee Company cafe

Michael, from High Barnes, said: “We’ve had so much positive feedback from people on the coffees and the interior. We pick up a lot of custom from people to and from the Metro and the city centre and from other local businesses, such as A List salon. We’re dog friendly too, so a lot of people pop in when they’re out walking their dog.”

“I think in recent years there’s been a shift in Sunderland from the national coffee chains and people are looking to support independent, local businesses.”

As well as a full range of hot coffees, Grinder sells iced coffees, frappes, milkshakes and home-made cakes from a local baker.

Speaking about what attracted him to the site, Michael said: “I’d worked in hospitality previously so had that experience. I’ve always been passionate about good coffee so this was something I’d been hoping to do for years. Ironing Basket moved to Grangetown so the site became available. I like that it’s a little out of town and that there’s no where else doing this around here.”

Inside the newly opened Grinder Coffee Company cafe

Michael hopes to take on more staff as the business expands and is also planning on selling home-made crafts, jams and chutneys in the future.

*Grinder Coffee Co in Durham Road is open Monday to Friday from 7.30am to 6pm and Saturday from 9am to 5pm.

*Read our guide to Sunderland’s best coffee spots here.

Owner Michael Curtis of the newly opened Grinder Coffee Company cafe
Quirky details include these hand-made masks
There's a range of teas and coffees on offer
The site took around two months to refurb
The coffee shop opened in the past month
Grinder also sells home-made cakes and pastries