Great State: Waukomis Native Develops a Taste for Coffee in Seattle and Brought it Home

WAUKOMIS, OKLAHOMA — Bob Underwood claims that if you grabbed ten people from a Seattle, Washington street corner eight of them would tell you they’d worked in a coffee shop at some point.

Gather ten people in Waukomis, Oklahoma and eight of them might tell you they’ve never set foot in a coffee shop.

Nevertheless, Bob insists, “Every small town needs a good coffee shop.”

But Underwood and his wife Mary dragged ‘A Little Bit of Seattle’, kicking and screaming, back to Bob’s hometown in the wheat belt, back to what used to be the band room at Waukomis High School.

“I played tuba over there where the gelato case is,” he says.

He left Waukomis to join the Navy.

Bob developed a taste for coffee by living in the world capital of coffee shops for more than thirty years.

The Underwoods retired in Oklahoma, bought a really good espresso machine, and practiced with it for three years before opening their own shop.

“That’s when we started talking about good tasting coffee.”

In addition to the coffee, Bob invested in a top-of-the-line gelato machine too.

Since opening seven years ago you’d be surprised at how many espresso and latte drinkers have found their way to 301 Main Street; student pilots from Vance AFB, coffee snobs from surrounding towns, and even a reporter who’d spent several years of his own boyhood in the Great Pacific Northwest.

“This really could be a Seattle coffee shop,” says a visitor looking around at all the decorations. “Except it’s in Waukomis, America. That’s it,” responds Bob.

The Underwoods brought quite a few souvenirs from their time in Washington.

You might have to squint really hard on a hot day to picture the Puget Sound from Northwest Oklahoma.

But from this spot in Waukomis, you can taste it.

Bob and Mary run their coffee shop from 8 to 8 every day but Sunday.

For more information on them go to http://www.littlebitofseattle.com