Tysons, VA

Coffee drinkers will have to wait at least another month for Fairfax-based Simply Social Coffee to open in the Town of Vienna.

Owner Kathy Pao told Tysons Reporter that the new coffee shop delayed the opening plans to possibly sometime in October at BB&T’s former spot in the Cedar Park Shopping Center.

Pao said that she signed the lease for the Vienna location last November after picking the location for its drive-thru window and proximity to the Fairfax coffee shop. While Pao originally saw the drive-thru window as a “perk,” she didn’t realize that she would need approval from the town to use it for food and drinks.

Currently, Pao is seeking a conditional use permit from the town to use the former bank’s drive-in teller as a drive-thru window.

Origianlly, she was planning to open the shop and drive-thru component at the same time this month. With delays from the pandemic and uncertainty about the conditional use permit, she now plans to open the shop — but not the window — sometime in October.

“It’s not one particular delay. It’s an accumulation,” Pao said. “It just adds up.”

Despite the extra work for the drive-thru window, Pao said she sees it as an extension of the coffee shop’s focus on building community relationships.

When the coffee shop opens, Pao hopes that people will support her female- and minority-owned business during the pandemic.

“I think these days, people do appreciate the mom and pop stores a little bit more,” Pao said.

Photo via Simply Social Coffee/Facebook

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