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Bittersweet Café

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Location
205 Farmington-Ohiopyle Road
Farmington, PA
County
Fayette
Description
Start-up
Total Project Cost
$238,810
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They’re not in it for money. They’re in it to promote tourism in southwestern Pennsylvania. The loan officer I worked with is just so personable. He brought it all down to earth. He was a very calming influence through every kind of storm.

- Terri Krysak, owner, Bittersweet Cafe

People

Terri Krysak always says the Ohiopyle area is “one of the most beautiful in the world,” and it bothers her that others see Fayette County as “depressed.”  “I just have had a vision, forever, that it doesn’t need to be this way.” When she finished home schooling her five sons, Terri set out to transform a family-owned house, using her experience with cooking, hospitality and management, into Bittersweet Café.

Progress

Terri sought advice from the St. Vincent College Small Business Development Center. When they talked about financing, she mentioned The Progress Fund. Her counselor “looked at me and said, ‘I think you’re right.’” The Progress Fund loaned $208,810 to purchase a building and equipment for the start-up café which features upscale gourmet food and drinks made from scratch with locally grown ingredients.

Impact

Terri and her sons turned the interior into a cozy space with a fireplace and antiques, while the wrap-around porch and grounds are “a little bit industrial,” with a state-of-the-art sound system. Raised beds in back produce some of the cafe’s vegetables, herbs and berries, and many other ingredients are grown nearby. A typical day might have her making homemade sausage, pie, granola, bread and cookies. Smell the aroma? That depressed feeling is gone, right? “Your attitude can change your environment,” Terri says. “Your attitude about this area can change this area.”

This project was financed in part using Pennsylvania Small Business Credit Initiative (PSBCI) funds from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Department of Community and Economic Development.

The Progress Fund is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

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News about Bittersweet Café

Batting .454

A recent New York Times article about traveling in Pennsylvania featured twelve places, including the famous Frank Lloyd Wright property, Fallingwater. Of the eleven other places mentioned, five of them are our borrowers. That makes our batting average .454, which isn’t bad odds. Continue reading Read the full post »