Mud Creek

continued from page 7

(including original, veggie, deluxe, and spinach and feta), belgian waffles, and a gluten friendly quesadilla.

The lunch menu is even more extensive, offering grilled paninis, wraps, cafe sandwiches, the soup of the day, and signature salads. Julie and Taylor said just a few of the most popular selections are chipotle chicken, turkey club, and pizza paninis; chicken salad, tuscan chicken, and chicken caeser wraps; the Mud Creek club, Dirty Bird (smoked turkey and ham), roast beef, and ham and cheese sandwiches; and the Greek chicken salad and chicken caeser salad. All of those favorites have been around since Mud Creek opened, but they have added so many more selections since inception.

“People consider us a restaurant,” Julie said, but they still come from miles away for the coffee. There is the delivery driver who always stops on his way through Stockbridge for what he calls the best iced mocha available. There is the woman from Appleton who comes down for what she says is the best chai tea around. There is the motorcyclist from West Bend who rides up here in the summer just to go to Mud Creek. And there are the people on their way to and from Door County who swing through the village for that reason as well. “We put a lot of love into everything we do,” Julie said.

The women said Mud Creek Coffee Café has changed over the past 10 years because they have listened to their customers, kept a close eye on trends, and have adjusted to what works and what does not. They no longer offer suppers— instead closing at 3 p. m. daily—but have branched out more into offering other items for sale including wine and wine accessories, chocolates, greeting cards, honey, tea, soaps, lotions, and more.

Julie said people often leave Mud Creek Coffee Café with something in their hands, but they also often leave with something else—a new friend in the staff of the café. “It is so nice to see strangers become really good friends, and all of a sudden they’re telling Taylor their life story. It’s all walks of life.” The same can be said of Mud Creek Coffee Café’s other employees. “We have been blessed with very loyal and talented employees along the way,” Julie said. “We definitely haven’t done it by ourselves.”

Sometimes those new relationships become even more—like Taylor’s boyfriend, who came into Mud Creek often for coffee or something to eat over a period of a couple months until one day he asked her to go out with him.

Count that as one more great story in the 10-year history of Mud Creek Coffee Café, right up there with the story of how the coffee house and cafe first got its start. When Julie joined husband Bill at Parsons Construction in 2000, she said she was used to the amenities of the big city but could not get those in Stockbridge. “My friends would want to meet for lunch and we would have to drive somewhere or go to a bar,” she said.

While on a trip out of the country in 2004, Julie said she answered the question in the Jana Stanfield song “If I Were Brave” by saying she would open a coffee shop. With the help of another couple and her husband, they purchased the former Karls Hardware building in Stockbridge, completely remodeled it, and today have Mud Creek Coffee Café.

A decade later, Julie watches her daughter successfully managing the business and customers leaving full and happy on a daily basis. They continue to be very busy so they do not always take a moment to reflect on how far they have come. When Julie finally took that moment, she said, “It’s like you’re in the dream but you don’t even realize you’re in it.”