Memphian to Meet: Mitch Buckner

Posted on September 30, 2014

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By Kendra Lyons

tempTamp & Tap, located on Gayoso downtown across from the Peabody, has become a favorite work and chill spot among those of us at theGRIND. With its low-key atmosphere, unique food and drink options, eclectic music scene, and friendly servers, Tamp & Tap is a no-brainer when it comes to choosing where to settle down and get work done for a few hours or have a coffee with friends. Mitch Buckner, owner of Tamp & Tap, gives us the low-down on how the shop got started and why he loves being a part of it:

How did you end up in your position as owner?
I met Taylor Berger through a mutual friend, JD Sledd. JD and Taylor were working on Chiwawa a couple of years ago and I helped a little with that project. During that time, Taylor was approached by a group that was looking at putting an office in this location and they wanted someone to add a little coffee shop and café to go along with their community and office concept. Knowing my coffee background, Taylor called me and the rest grew into what is currently Tamp & Tap.

Where are you originally from and how long have you lived in Memphis?
I was born in Memphis and lived in Memphis until Kindergarten when my family moved out to Collierville. I lived in Collierville until ten years ago when I bought a house in East Memphis.

What is your favorite part about your job?
It’s hard to put it down to one favorite part. I of course love the coffee and ability to introduce a whole city to great coffee. I enjoy all parts of coffee; drinking it, making it, the science behind it, and everything in between. I am constantly learning new things about coffee and new methods or new recipes. But I also love everything else we do here. I’ve enjoyed making different house-made syrups and coming up with new drinks (coffee, or non-coffee). I’ve loved helping build our ever-evolving food menu. I’ve always loved cooking and I get to play around a little with food items. I enjoy the interaction with the community and our customers. I love it all.

Music seems to be intertwined with the Tamp & Tap experience, from the music that is always playing on the speakers, to events like the Bluegrass Brunch. Is music important to you personally?
Music is very important to me personally. I’ve loved all kinds of music all of my life. Im constantly looking for new music and new artists. At one point in my life, I owned over 10,000 CDs. I don’t think a day goes by that I don’t have music on somewhere at some time and often times, all day. I listen to a huge mixture of genres and it’s hard to pin down one kind, or even one artist that I love the most (although I would say overall, it might be Pink Floyd and Manchester Orchestra as a close second). From opening Tamp and Tap, I’ve tried to keep an open mind to styles of music that we play here. I allow the employees to pick the music with only a few guidelines. You can come in and hear Lorde, Snoop, Prince, Lyle Lovett, Lucero, Phantogram, and Bad Books all in the same sitting. We keep it mixed up all the time. What I enjoy most about Memphis music is the diversity. We have such a mixture of styles and genres and mixed genres that combine multiple styles in one. We have some great music in Memphis.

What makes Tamp & Tap a unique coffee shop to Memphis?
Atmosphere, concept, and quality. The atmosphere and ambience is great from the music that we play, the wild local wood tables and bar, and even the wide open windows so you can watch what’s going on outside. It’s a fun, inviting, and warm atmosphere. I only wish we had a fireplace for the winter! We have people that come in and study for hours and need to stay caffeinated. We have people that come in for a quick lunch and probably have never had our coffee. We have people that come in for beer and trivia on Wednesday night or to grab a pint and play on our old school NES or N64. We have people that come in with business meetings or we’ve even had people conduct job interviews. Our concept works for all of it. Great coffee, great food, great beer.

Make sure to check out Tamp & Tap next time you are downtown. We recommend Bluegrass Brunch, every Saturday and Sunday, where you can get awesome food and enjoy bluegrass music by local musicians

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Posted in: Memphian to Meet