By Kevin Collison
Our Daily Nada, the River Market bookstore and café inspired by a Hemingway short story, has closed its doors after operating less than two years.
The commercial creation of a pair of attorneys, Andrea Back and Amy Covitz, sparked a lot of enthusiasm, but failed to generate enough business to make the space at 304 Delaware work for them.
“For us, the space was little too big in terms of square footage and the rent was too high,” Baca said. “The overhead was too much.”
Baca said the café also was challenged selling enough food to meet the city standards for a having a bar/restaurant liquor license.
“You need to sell 50 percent or greater of food more than liquor to keep the licenses so you have to sell a lot of food to meet the ratio,” she said.
In its short history, the business opened in late August 2018, Our Daily Nada became a fun place for people to browse the bookstore or enjoy a drink and light snack at the comfortable bar and lounge area.
The menu included soups, charcuterie boards and toasts spread with avocado or prosciutto and peaches, and desserts prepared by Bloom bakery.
The book selection was heavy on cook books, new fiction, classics (Hemingway included, of course) and non-fiction.
“Our high points were the way we connected with the community,” Baca said. “We had lots of events with the Young Friends of the Kansas City Public Library and the community involvement was great.”
She said there may be a future Nada, but how that might work and where it might be is still too early to tell. A closing sign on the business door urged patrons to follow its progress on Facebook.
“Books were our original passion and we’re trying to figure out how to scale back and still do the coffee and bar stuff,” Baca said.
“We’ve had lots of love from people who said we were charming. We hope to do something smaller in the future and we’re scouting locations.”
Craig Slawson, the Denver owner of the building where Our Daily Nada was housed, regretted the departure of the café and hoped to attract a new tenant to the space soon.
“We understand the difficulties for startup merchants and we appreciate their effort and wish them well,” he said.
“We’re always looking for new and exciting concepts, and people who add value to the street.”
Don’t miss any downtown news, sign up for our weekly CityScene KC email review here.