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Bethel's Molten Java Cares As Much About Community As It Does Coffee

Wendy Cahill, the owner of Molten Java in Bethel. Photo Credit: Jeanne Muchnick
Local art and gift items are on display at Molten Java in Bethel. Photo Credit: Jeanne Muchnick
Molten Java offers more than just coffee: it hosts a series of musical events at night. Photo Credit: Jeanne Muchnick
Molten Java is on Greenwood Avenue in Bethel. Photo Credit: Jeanne Muchnick

BETHEL, Conn. -- Expect an expanded menu of food offerings along with your coffee come winter at Bethel's Molten Java.

So said Owner Wendy Cahill, who admitted she works at a slow pace when it comes to her business.

Obviously, her philosophy is working as anyone who's ever spent any time inside her cozy coffee shop can attest to.

A smattering of locals tap away on computers -- Cahill said she has regulars who are there all day -- as well as newcomers who pop by for a quick caffeine fix.

The coffee is obviously the big seller, but so is the camaraderie and sense of community. Cahill said they roast their own beans using a fluid roaster -- "sortof like a popcorn popper," she explained -- which gives the coffee a slightly different flavor. Fairtrade Organic tends to be the most popular but each barista has his or her own favorite and so it's up to them to brew what they want on a given day.

Molten Java also serves burritos made in house, along with grab-and-go granola bars and other snacks. Cahill hopes to expand on the taqueria concept with additional ingredients to her burritos. And there is a possiblity of eventually adding beer and wine to the menu. "Possibly," she stressed. There is, after all, live music and open mic nights on select evenings (Thursdays for open mic; Tuesdays for acoustic jam). There is also local art for sale and Cahill does her best to promote area-based artists.

As to the secret behind her success - she's been in business since 2003 and expanded to her current space four years ago -- Cahill credits the community. "I think Bethel is the kind of town that has a group of people that really want to support local businesses and wants to have local people around them to spend their days with."

She admits making her business one that's welcoming is something that's always been important to her. "I have to live in my business. It's my life," she said. "So I want my life as a local owner to be as fulfilling as it possibly can."

Molten Java is at 213 Greenwood Ave., (203) 739-0313,

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