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Coffee City

Melissa Allison follows the world's biggest coffee-shop chain and other Seattle caffeine purveyors.

December 14, 2009 at 10:43 AM

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Zoka Coffee in Snoqualmie bought by Steve's Doughnuts

Posted by Melissa Allison

Jeff Babcock is coming off a big weekend. The owner of Zoka Coffee Roaster & Tea is just back from Japan, where he licenses three stores called Zoka and one that has a different name.

Babcock also sold Zoka's Snoqualmie location to another resident of the ridge, Steve Pennington, who plans to turn it into Steve's Doughnuts in late January.

Pennington will keep all the baristas who want to stay and continue selling Zoka coffee in drinks and in whole-bean coffee bags.

"We need to focus on our great new location down in Kirkland, where things are really crankin'," said Babcock, who has had the Snoqualmie store for about two years. He opened the Kirkland shop this summer and still has stores in Tangletown and behind University Village.

Zoka coffee is roasted on West Nickerson Street in Ballard, where Babcock says he might someday open a drive-up shop.

Pennington, a former program manager for Microsoft, plans to make doughnuts at the Snoqualmie store using all natural ingredients (including palm oil) from as nearby as possible.

"We want the the cows and chickens to be local and the flour to be Washington flour," he said. "Within reason, we want to make sure we're supporting local agriculture."

Why doughnuts? "I love doughnuts," Pennington said. "Our motto is, 'Doughnuts make you happy.'"

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