Aug. 30—Lizeth and Caleb Carter bring Latino flavors to New Ellenton with their mobile Carter's Cafecito.
The coffee truck offers espresso classics along with a Latino-themed specialty menu. The Carters started the Cafecito after noticing a lack of local coffee shops in Aiken, Lizeth said.
"I'm from Washington state, and growing up I saw coffee everywhere, especially drive-thru coffee," she said. "And so, when I started coming to the South, I was not seeing that here. I was seeing big chains, but I wasn't seeing locally-owned coffee. When we decided to move to South Carolina, that was like the game plan, we were going to move and start the business."
The Cafecito's specialty menu includes Mexican hot chocolate, horchata, Mexican mochas and a prickly pear horchata. The latter is a favorite among customers, Caleb said.
The New Ellenton community has shown a lot of support for the unique coffee truck.
"The outreach from the community has been tremendous," Caleb said. "From grand opening day, we've just been steadily busy and growing every day almost. It's the support from the local community, specifically local business owners. They're coming by almost every day."
People have been open to trying new and unfamiliar flavors, Lizeth said. Their unique take on coffee has been what intrigues people about the Cafecito.
"Especially with our specialty menu; we're offering things that they don't see everywhere else," Caleb said.
Lizeth said the best part about running the Cafecito so far has been all the people she's gotten to meet.
"I don't like it when there's downtime," she said. "I like it when we're busy, when I'm seeing people. And everybody's been really nice."
Right now, the Carters are the only two working at the mobile coffee shop, but they are looking to hire more employees in the future.
The couple are also looking for ways to add new coffees, including adding a coffee imported from Mexico, Caleb said.
A permanent location is a major goal for the Cafecito in the future.
"For sure I would like to have a permanent spot in New Ellenton, like always, just because of the community," Caleb said. "One of the biggest comments that we got on the first day and that first week was, 'Wow we're so happy somebody brought coffee.'"
The truck is located on Main Street in New Ellenton, across the street from Ashley's on Main furniture store.