An Unusual Combination: Bicycles and Coffee Approaches One Year of Business

An+Unusual+Combination%3A+Bicycles+and+Coffee+Approaches+One+Year+of+Business

Written by Sarah Snare and Faith Ralston

Nicole Davison and her husband Scott opened a shop just under a year ago that combined their two loves: bike riding and coffee drinking.

Located down the street from Loudoun Valley High School, Bicycles & Coffee lies in the heart of Purcellville. Because it is such an unusual combo, many people may wonder how the two activities are related.

Scott Davison explained, “Cyclists have enjoyed coffee before, during, and after rides for a very long time, so there’s a lot of synergy there. It just kind of makes sense. Coffee boosts glycogen levels, but really the reason is that it has become part of the cycling lifestyle over time. It’s a tradition.”

Davison’s idea for opening the business came from his life-long love of cycling. Before coming to Virginia, Davison worked at another bike shop in Portland, Oregon. Once he and his wife settled down in Purcellville, an opportunity presented itself.

The small Loudoun County town of Purcellville is home to the end of the W&OD Trail, a former railroad bed which has paved and set aside for anyone who wishes to use it. Because of its popularity with bike riders, the path is often called “The Bike Trail.”

A local dance studio less than a mile off the bike trail had recently closed down, and this caught the couple’s attention. The two seized this opportunity and rented out the space to open up their very own bike shop. A short while into the planning, they made the decision to incorporate a coffee shop into their business as well.

“We wanted to give people a reason to come to the shop besides just buying a bike or bike parts,” Davison said. “They can start a ride here or end a ride here and have coffee.”

Although they occupy the same space, the two shops are run as separate businesses. The coffee shop sells coffee along with various bakery items. The bicycle shop sells bikes, bike parts, helmets, wheels, and cycling related merchandise. There is even a service station inside the shop where customers bring their bikes for repairs, some of which Davison does himself.

The shop is not exclusive to bike riders who enjoy coffee. Some visit Bicycles & Coffee to purchase both, but many are only there for one or the other.

“Obviously, a bicycle costs a lot more than a cup of coffee. However, they’re both important in their own right. We sell a lot more coffee than we do bikes every day,” Davison said.

To those in Loudoun County, the combination of bicycles and coffee may seem a little strange, but the odd pairing appears to be what makes the store unique. However, shops like this one are much more common in urban areas than they are in Northern Virginia.

Davison believes what really makes his shop stand out is their attention to customers and their level of service. His favorite thing about running the shop is working on the bikes, as well as the interaction with his customers.

He said, “This is probably the first business that I’ve owned that I really, truly believe in and am behind 100%.”