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Kinni Coffee & Lounge goes for 'uptown feel'

Friends, business partners and River Falls residents Eric Anderson and Jason Coverston officially open their new venture Monday called Kinni Coffee & Lounge at 122 S. Main St.

They invite everyone for a free coffee and mug from 8-10 a.m. Monday-Friday next week.

Kinni Coffee will serve fair-trade coffee, flowering tea, food and, hopefully in about a month, wine.

Anderson said, "We chose (the name) Kinni Coffee because we want to have something local and geared to River Falls."

"We really wanna do some jazz, blues, stuff like that," Coverston said about entertainment.

Anderson said the new business is going green and mostly organic. It'll recycle, serve product in eco-friendly containers, offer organic edibles and use all-natural syrups for the coffee.

The two have been working on the space since Jan. 1. They said people have been curious, peeking in windows and stopping to ask what's happening at former tattoo studio space.

They redid the original wooden floors. They installed all new lighting. They found gently used booths to line the lounge and added tables in the middle.

They hope to pour a back patio this spring.

The partners invested heavily in the building's electrical system. It had to be upgraded, but now every booth has an outlet so patrons can power their laptops.

They had to redo most walls, saying all of them had touch-up on top of touch-up. They expanded the stage facing Main Street by about 2 1/2 feet.

"It was a lot of work," Anderson said, not excluding the classic photos hanging on the wall.

He and Coverston say they wanted to create an intimate place where people feel comfortable, where they can hang out and use the free high-speed Internet.

"...We've been trying to re-use," Coverston said about the remodel project.

"We're still hoping to enter into the wine-bar scene," Anderson said, "but we can't count those chickens yet...That's just how it is."

Whether the business can have one depends on two pending City Council decisions that should come within a month.

If they get the go-ahead, the partners have a portion of their big basement ready and waiting to become a wine cellar. The pending decision(s) will also affect the shop's food menu and hours.

Coverston's excited about serving tea. Knowing they'd "get into" it, the partners sampled many kinds. One they'll offer is called flowering tea.

They serve it in a glass pot full of hot water, and the tea -- which is actually bags and leaves sewn together -- expands and flowers while it steeps. The two describe its flavor as "awesome."

Anderson said the business will serve food, but the two aren't sure exactly what yet. He's talking with the neighboring owner of the Grateful Bread and checking into options.

They said Kinni Coffee will definitely serve sandwiches, dessert and some health food.

"We're gonna be open late," Anderson said.

Subject to change, preliminary hours will be 8 a.m. to 11 p.m., possibly later on weekends if the business gets a wine license.

Coverston emphasizes that the partners will go with the flow.

"We're staying flexible," he said. "If something works, we'll go with it."

Anderson said, "We're trying to bring an uptown feel to downtown River Falls."

Kinni Coffee & Lounge is hiring and welcomes potential employees to stop in or go online for an application at Contact the business by phone at 715-629-7088.

Reach Debbie Griffin at or 426-1048.