There’s a new coffee shop and cafe at Country Village in Bothell, and it’s owner is looking to make her mark once again at the artisan business center.
The Practical Sparrow is the brainchild of long-time Country Village caterer Teresa Howard, 51, who recently sold her business of 21 years, Celestial Catering, to Alexa’s Catering and opened up downstairs, beneath the Rosewood Room. But she plans on keeping that independent spirit in her new store.
“We make everything here,” Howard said, right down to the coffee syrup and pastries.
Aside from the hardwood floors, all the other wood at the Practical Sparrow is from Howard and her husband’s property on Decatur Island. They’ve been working since August to get the store up-and-running. But what really stands out are the tabletops, covered in old dictionary pages, circa the 1940s. These were half the inspiration for the name.
The pages, Howard said, were from an old dictionary her elderly uncle was getting rid of called “The Practical Standard.” An old business at the Country Village site was called “Sparrow Boatworks,” Howard said.
Each table has a different theme, ranging from birds to science and sailing ships.
“I do say every time I sit down here, I learn a new word,” She said.
Original artwork hangs from the walls, part of the current display which rotates on a two-month cycle.
“I’m going to try and have arts openings that coincide with wine walks or the Ladies Night Out shopping,” said Howard.
The cafe opened Jan. 21 serving coffee and pastries. This Thursday, Howard hopes to begin serving sandwiches and salads with an eye towards eventually serving some hot foods.
“I think the Practical Sparrow will be a great place to come for a quick meal,” Howard said. “I’m hoping that we will eventually become the meeting place in Country Village.”
Howard began working in the food industry as a caterer while pursuing an art degree in college and working as a caterer. After she graduated, she said jobs in the arts were scarce, so she continued catering.
“I stayed in food, and have kind of been working food ever since,” she said.
She plans on working long hours at the Sparrow for a few years to come, before hopefully hiring on some additional help.
The Practical Sparrow is located Country Village in Suite A, next to The Beauty of Hope. It is open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sundays. An official grand opening is scheduled for Feb. 11 from 5 to 7 p.m.