New espresso cafe brings European traditions to Boone


Cristian Garnier

Jim and Kathy Kozak are the owners of Boone’s newest espresso cafe, Talia Espresso. This is the Kozak’s second location, expanding their goal of bringing “European espresso to this region,”

Noelle Charles, Reporter

Boone’s newest espresso cafe has come just in time for students who need a pick-me-up during midterm season.

Talia Espresso, located at 444 W. King St., officially opened its doors Feb. 26. Owners Jim and Kathy Kozak opened the first location in Wilkesboro in 2005, staying true to the cafe’s European inspirations. 

“We try to keep it as authentically European as possible. We don’t trend in the American style of coffee, so all of our machines and gear come out of Italy,” Kathy Kozak said.

The cafe’s name has a biblical meaning. “(Talia) is Hebrew, and the word means to ‘lift up the name of Yahweh,’” Kathy Kozak said. “The word ‘Ta’ means ‘to lift,’ and ‘Yah’ means ‘Yahweh.’” 

The name Talia was a great representation of what Jim and Kathy wanted for their store.

“We coined the phrase ‘lift me up’ because we thought, ‘We are all about lifting people up, it’s not just about us. It’s gotta be about lifting up the community and lifting up their spirits.’ Of course, if they get espresso, too, that lifts them up,” Kathy Kozak said. 

Talia Espresso’s menu features gourmet lattes, espresso, cappuccinos and fresh pastries. Brianna Elder, a barista and manager, has worked at the Wilkesboro location since 2013. Elder said she enjoys working for Talia Espresso because (Jim and Kathy Kosak) put such an emphasis on serving the people around them. 

“I like having a craft that everybody enjoys. You can serve so many people that love coffee and enjoy it,” Elder said. 

Kathy and Jim Kozak said they knew that Boone would be a great place to open up a cafe. 

“We just felt like we needed to offer European espresso to this region, and we love students. We love education, we love the arts, and so, it’s cultivating all these aspects of who we are,” Kathy Kozak said. 

Sierra Flynn, a junior English major, considers herself an avid coffee drinker. When she heard about Talia Espresso, she said she was thrilled.

“I think it’s really great for Boone to open up Talia Espresso. Now, we just need a Sonic,” Flynn said.