Dallas-based Ascension Coffee Company is working on opening new locations. The coffee company has recently reopened its store in the Dallas Design District. After closing for three months, the shop was modified to look spacious and bright. Aside from the new radiant look, the reopening of the Oak Lawn branch comes with a new dinner menu.
After doubling its original shop in Oak Lawn, the president plans to open at least two new locations. This expansion comes after the company closed four stores during the coronavirus pandemic.
President Bill Schaffler believes the past eighteen months is “a reset.” He said that during this time, he hired a new managing director for the Dallas-based coffee roastery and a new director of culinary to oversee the company’s lunch, brunch, and dinner menus.
According to Schaffler, these newly hired personnel were vital to the company’s expansion. “Without these two, there’s no way we could expand,” he said.
The recently hired director of culinary, Jason Connelly, previously worked as the executive sous chef of the Adolphus in downtown Dallas. The new managing director, Jessica Keenan, used to work for Whole Foods’ coffee product Allegro before joining Ascension. She is now leading the roastery efforts as she continues to buy small-batch coffees from the best places around the world. The most recent batch was sourced from Yemen, which is known for its distinctive coffee.
Answering questions on why a local coffee shop hired a chef with deep hotel experience like Connelly, Schaffler explained that the new chef brings an element of culinary the establishment has never had. He also says that Ascension is more than a coffee shop.
Schaffler, alongside Keenan and Connelly, is working to establish more of a food identity for Ascension. While he says that Ascension will always be “coffee forward,” the president envisions the establishment as a sit-down restaurant.