By: Courtney Dabney
The dream began at age 16 when Eder Teixeira asked his mother for $15,000 to open his own coffee shop. She didn’t say no, Teixeira says, but he did hear “no” from building owners who wouldn’t take the young teen seriously at the time.
Ten years later, Teixeira has made good on his promise. Last December, he opened Sons of Liberty Coffee on Lancaster Avenue — a shop that’s quickly become one of the hottest hangouts in downtown Fort Worth. Teixeira continues to run Sons of Liberty alongside his web design and SEO company, Creative Mind Lab. As the coffee shop approaches its one-year anniversary, Teixeira visited with Fort Worth Magazine to talk about the future of SOL — one that includes a few secret menu items.
Q. So, Sons of Liberty was basically a teenage dream come true for you.
A. To me, the goal was to work on businesses I was passionate about — I have always been passionate about design and coffee. With Creative Mind Lab, I have helped open or reopen many coffee shops like Society Coffee, Kindred, Trio — either completely designed their branding or consulted with them. I felt like by having Creative Mind Lab and working with so many coffee shops, I was a little more qualified by the time we opened ours.
Q. You also work behind the counter at Sons of Liberty, correct?
A. Yeah, we took the whole month, trained like everybody else. A lot of times, my wife and I would just send [the staff] home and close ourselves so they could get some rest. Even last night, I was there until 1:30, prepping for the rest of the week. I have found myself really enjoying being there. When I am there, I have noticed people are more motivated. It brings in a little bit of energy.
Q. What challenges did you have to overcome opening Sons of Liberty?
A. I knew two things — not to get a partner and not to go into debt. There was this fear it wasn’t going to happen. The space was almost $150,000 more than I thought it would be, and God provided. One day, I was like, “Lord, I have to pay 50 grand this week.” I had an investment that took off and gave me a $60,000 profit. Little things like that kept happening; it was insane.
Q. So, Sons of Liberty is debt-free?
A. Sons of Liberty is debt-free. I get asked who is my partner a lot, and being a Christian, I honestly believe He is my partner.
Q. For a little while, you were living in the apartments right above the coffee shop. What was it like being so close to work?
A. The first year, it was important for us to live close because there were a lot of late hours and early mornings. Starting a business is like raising a child; you want to be as close to your child as possible. If she cries, if she hints at anything, you want to be there. So, it was important for me that if they needed anything, I was accessible. It was fun. Lots of free coffee.
Q. What is your go-to drink at your coffee shop?
A. Right now, my go-to drink is a secret menu item. It is half chocolate milk, half nitro coffee. A lot of people know about it now. It’s incredible; it tastes so good. I am actually going to create a secret menu probably in the next month or two.
Q. Speaking of secret menu, what other plans do you have for the future of Sons of Liberty?
A. I do want to roast, open a roasting facility. And then, too, I want to open more locations, preferably here in Fort Worth. We are launching a pregame menu you can come get right before you go out for the night. We are going to have a really delicious espresso shot that is really concentrated but really delicious. Then, the secret menu we are going to launch will have the coffee and chocolate milk [and] a few other things.
Q. OK, whose idea was it to do the chocolate milk on tap?
A. I stole the idea ... so what we didn’t steal, and what was unique to us, is that we push it out through nitrate. We wanted to have a slight infusion of nitro to make it thicker. There are like, three other shops in the country that do chocolate milk, so I cannot claim [it].
1. Messenger bag. A gift from a friend, because his old bag was falling apart.
4. Topo Chico. Because Eder doesn’t like plain water.
5. Beats headphones. Lately he’s been listening to Leon Bridges, Eminem and Kendrick Lamar.
6. Onyx coffee. This is what’s brewed at Sons of Liberty.
7. Coffee grinder. Eder uses this to make coffee, especially when traveling.
8. Grooming gel. “Always have this in my bag. Don’t judge.”
By: Courtney Dabney