Biz Beat

Oakdale drink stand closes, becoming first Dutch Bros Coffee kiosk to open in county

Ever wonder what it’s like on the Dutch Bros. graveyard shift? Barista explains

Zade Hakki, 19 of Kennewick, works the graveyard shift at Dutch Bros. Coffee in Kennewick, Washington.
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Zade Hakki, 19 of Kennewick, works the graveyard shift at Dutch Bros. Coffee in Kennewick, Washington.

If you’ve never had Dutch Bros Coffee, you should be able to try it sooner than you might think locally.

The Oregon-based coffee company is coming to the Central Valley in a big way, with another new location planned in Oakdale. While the chain does not have any coffee shops in Stanislaus County currently, that is changing quickly. The former Pete’s Joe & Snow coffee and shaved ice kiosk in Oakdale is in the process of being converted to a Dutch Bros.

It’s the second Dutch Bros location announced in the area in as many months. Last month, it was revealed another Dutch Bros Coffee stand is planned for a new retail development next to Stanislaus State University in Turlock. But that project still needs approval from the Turlock City Council before construction can begin, with a possible February 2020 opening.

The former Pete’s Joe & Snow, a locally owned coffee kiosk in the Cost Less shopping center off Highway 120/Yosemite Avenue, is being renovated in preparation for a Dutch Bros now. Monday was the independent coffee shop’s last day. Owner Rich Murdoch said they were approached by representatives from the company about taking over their lease.

Pete’s Joe & Snow opened in November 2014. Murdoch, who is vice president of the Oakdale-based real estate development company R.J. Murdoch Inc., built the kiosk across from Cindy’s Restaurant for another independent coffee shop to move into. But when that deal fell through, they reached out to Dutch Bros about taking over the new space.

But at that time, Dutch Bros was less established in California, and passed on the spot. Now, five years later, the company is beginning to expand into Stanislaus County and the Central Valley. The company has more than 300 of its signature drive-up/walk-up kiosks in seven states currently. The closest current locations are in Stockton and Fresno.

“The broker I talked with said they were looking at Riverbank and several Modesto sites, too,” Murdoch said. “Within a year, we will see 10 of them within the Central Valley. They’re coming on big.”

Dutch Bros spokesman Adam Hanby confirmed that projects are underway in Oakdale and Turlock. The company is actively expanding to the greater Modesto area, so don’t be surprised if at least one Modesto location is announced in the near future as well.

“Our real estate team is actively exploring other cities and locations in your area,” Hanby said in an email statement about the valley sites. “We can’t wait to get to know, and serve, your communities!”

Murdoch said one of the conditions of closing and letting Dutch Bros take over the lease was that it also transfer over whatever current employees wanted to join the new team. About five of the shop’s 10 staff will be hired by Dutch Bros when it opens. Murdoch said work could be done in about 60 days on the site, which was already constructed as a two-sided drive-thru. The stand could then open by the summer.

Dutch Bros will carry the company’s full line of coffee and specialty drinks including warm, iced and blended drinks in a variety of flavors. Murdoch said he is excited for former Pete’s fans to try to new Dutch Bros instead.

“Pete’s did really well for us,” he said. “It was great, and we thank all of our supporters. But Dutch Bros made us a great offer, and it was clear they were coming to Oakdale. So it’s better to be with them than competing against them.”

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Marijke Rowland writes about new business, restaurant and retail developments. She has been with The Modesto Bee since 1997 covering a variety of topics including arts and entertainment. Her Business Beat column runs midweek and Sundays. And it’s pronounced Mar-eye-ke.