Andrea McClain, owner of M Street Coffee in Sherman Oaks, graciously hosts an annual Student Piano Gig for Pastimes for a Lifetime, Inc.. Families gather on couches with their cappuccinos and teas to enjoy an afternoon of beautiful piano music. Her warm and caring personality ensures for a wonderful and memorable experience for my students and guests. They can’t wait for the next concert!
To honor Andrea’s dedication as a business woman and supporter of the arts, it is my pleasure to present this interview.
Linda: When did you open the M Street Coffee?
Andrea: M Street Coffee opened in January of 2008, so we just celebrated our 4th birthday! Every year is such a milestone and it feels wonderful heading into our 5th year of business. I originally opened M Street with a business partner and was able to take over full ownership within the first year. It has been the most rewarding experience of my life.
Linda: What was your original vision for the place?
Andrea: The original vision for M Street Coffee was to create a community space where locals could gather over an amazing cup of coffee. The idea for the gallery was definitely part of the original vision. I really love the idea of transforming the space each month by featuring new local artists. I am a musician too, so having M Street function as a performing art space has been great fun.
Linda: What types of artwork do you feature and why?
Andrea: I like to feature a wide variety of artwork at M Street in order to keep the shop fresh & inspired. We’ve had mosaics, photography, crochet, pencil, mixed media, you name it. It’s always interesting to see what kind of response the artwork evokes. I’ve really enjoyed providing an outlet for local artists to connect with their community.
Linda: What types of performances do you host?
Andrea: We host a variety of events like poetry reading & acoustic music. Every 3rd Thursday of the month we hold an event called The Spoken Poem, which is an open mic night for poets and musicians to perform in a supportive and creative environment. We update our website with the various happenings at www.mstreetcoffee.com.
Linda: Do you host private events such as birthday parties?
Andrea: The space is available after hours for private events including filming, business meetings… and even piano recitals! We recently hosted a fundraiser for one of our customers who is in India helping with a children’s program. And my personal fave – a successful marriage proposal!
Linda: What beverages and products are offered at M Street?
Andrea: We have a secret organic blend of locally roasted coffee that provides the foundation of our coffee and espresso menu – I believe this is the real highlight in our drink lineup. We also feature an impressive list of loose-leaf teas, and whip up some pretty terrific smoothies. M Street’s baked goods are made from some of the best local bakeries – our vegan and gluten-free goodies are very popular along with our organic berry pop tarts!
Linda: What are your future plans for M Street?
Andrea: It is my goal to keep M Street Coffee growing, evolving and thriving. As we grow and expand, the key will always be creating an amazing and unique experience, providing the best product, and growing and nurturing our relationships. I truly feel that there is endless potential in this neighborhood coffee shop, and I can’t wait to see how far we can take it!
As a piano teacher for over 25 years, I feel it is important that students are given the opportunity to perform at public venues to build their esteem and confidence as well as their portfolio and resume.
If your business would like to support the arts by hosting a Student Piano Gig for a special function or charity event, you are welcome to reach Linda Wehrli at Linda@www.pastimesinc.com or 818-766-0614.