OTTAWA — Putnam County native Tom Giesken has had a dream for over 20 years of opening a coffee shop in Ottawa, and now that dream will become a reality.
Tom and his wife, Patty, purchased the Big Daddy’s building at 114 N. Elm St. in Ottawa on Dec. 27 for use as a coffee shop. Tom Giesken has served as owner and president of Giesken Outdoor Advertising since 2000, with the business celebrating its 20th anniversary in August. Patty Giesken is director of radiology at St. Rita’s Medical Center.
Bob and Joan Langhals owned Big Daddy’s since July 4, 1980. They said Big Daddy’s will remain open for at least another three months while a transition is made.
“Tom has some big ideas and we wish him well and give him credit for wanting to try something different,” Joan Langhals said. “We appreciate all of the customers we have had all those years and made our days for us.”
Tom Giesken said the location — the corner of U.S. 224 and state Route 65 — will be marketed as the crossroads of the county.
“We looked at another property close to Big Daddy’s to purchase, but we felt the Big Daddy’s building would be good for a coffee shop because it already has a bar area and drive through,” Tom Giesken said. “People in town have encouraged me to open a coffee shop in town and I have told them if you don’t have a drive through you won’t make it.”
He and his wife have visited other coffee shops throughout Ohio to get ideas on what they would like to incorporate in their coffee shop.
“I am a coffee connoisseur and like to get the same thing, but am open to try new things,” Tom Giesken said. “People want to get their coffee and get to the next place they are going, and that is why you have to have a drive through.”
Menu items will include what Tom Giesken described as upscale quality coffee such as frappes, lattes, espresso, cappuccino and iced coffee with vanilla, caramel, cherry and hazelnut flavors. Also on the menu to start off will be doughnuts, pastries and cookies with plans to eventually offer lunch and dinner menu items.
Big Daddy’s current liquor license will be transferred to the coffee shop, opening options for coffee drinks with liquor in the evenings. An operations manager and two to three baristas will need to be hired. Tentative hours will be from 5:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays and closed Sundays.
Tom Giesken met with Technicon Design Group employees Gillian Stechschulte and Tony Hovest Tuesday to discuss design plans for the new coffee shop, which is planned to open in early fall.
An indoor stage also will be constructed where singers and guitarists can perform and will allow Tom Giesken to display his antique motorcycles and other historical memorabilia for customers to enjoy. An idea of possibly having a small farmers market selling local produce in the coffee shop is being considered.
Tom Giesken has plans to keep the bar that is in Big Daddy’s that was previously located in his grandfather’s bar, Pop’s Tavern, in Glandorf.
Reach Jennifer Peryam at 567-242-0362.