The River now flows through downtown Warsaw

Store owner Amanda Meerzo stands outside of The River Coffeehouse in downtown Warsaw recently. The store opened a week ago and is very similar to her coffee shop by the same name in North Webster. News Now Warsaw photo by Dan Spalding.
By Dan Spalding
News Now Warsaw

WARSAW —  There’s another coffee shop that’s opened in downtown Warsaw and this one has a familiar ring to it.

Amanda Meerzo, with help from her family, has opened The River Coffeehouse at the corner of Buffalo and Center streets directly across from city hall and catty cornered from the Kosciusko County Courthouse.

The business opened up last week and is the latest one in the downtown to offer coffee under a new theme or location.

Meerzo bought The River Coffeehouse in North Webster four years ago and has seen business thrive.

She said she knew downtown Warsaw had a competitive coffee shop environment and had been was urged over the years to consider opening a store in the county seat.

Last year, plans had been announced for an Italian sandwich shop in that spot (complete with a delivery window installed on the west side facing Buffalo Street), but the plan fell apart, which eventually opened the door for Meerzo.

Everything came together rather quickly, she said.

“We had an opportunity a couple of times, it just wasn’t the right time, and this opportunity presented itself,” she said. “We wanted to be in Warsaw. Being downtown is better and being on the corner is even better.”

“We do very well in North Webster. We’ve had a lot of people ask us to come to Warsaw, so we thought it was the right time,” she said.

The store will begin using the delivery window later this year when they also begin adding outside seating, she said.

In addition to coffee drinks, the store has a selection of food items and specializes in breakfast sandwiches.

Meerzo is a graduate of Warsaw Community High School and graduated from Grace College with a degree in business management.

She and her husband, Jamel, also own Mohawk Pier & Lift in Syracuse, Skoops Ice Cream in North Webster and a mobile coffee shop known as The River on Wheels.

Their four children are already amply involved, she said.

The first four years of running the North Webster coffee shop was a chance to work through the imperfections of operating a business, which has given her confidence in operating another store.

She believes passion is the key ingredient for a successful business.

“That’s what I was taught. If you have a passion for something you can do it, and I have a passion for coffee,” she said.

Business hours are 7 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. M-F and 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturdays.