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Best Barista 

Lexi Richardson, Florence Coffee Company

ALSO, BEST COFFEE (FLORENCE COFFEE)

click to enlarge photo by Robin Carleton - LEXI RICHARDSON, FLORENCE COFFEE CO.
  • Lexi Richardson, Florence Coffee Co.
  • photo by Robin Carleton

When we catch up with Lexi Richardson via cellphone, she’s working in the garden. More specifically, she’s working in the garden of one of her regulars from Florence Coffee Co.’s Pattee Creek Market location. “Yeah,” Richardson says with the same cheerful, generous, oh-shucks charm she exudes every morning while serving some of the best Americanos, mochas and lattes in the valley, “I have some really great customers that I’ve gotten to know pretty well.” Richardson’s not playing around when it comes to her rapport with customers. She confesses she once tried to count the regulars who visit her every day—she lost count after 64—and she figures she’s talked with each one, if you total their brief daily visits over her four-plus years at the same location, roughly nine hours. “I like to actually get to know them a little bit, connect with them on a personal level,” she says, with something of a modest understatement. Richardson’s exemplary customer service makes up just a fraction of what puts Florence Coffee Co., with its four Missoula locations, at the top of the always-competitive Best Coffee Hut category. But her positive, infectious attitude is indicative of a company that treats its employees well, knowing those employees will pass along the good vibes to sleep-deprived customers in need of a caffeine fix and a cheery start to their day. “I enjoy what I do,” Richardson says, “and part of that is because of who I get to see every day.”

Finalists, Best Barista

2. Jenny Lynn Fawcett • Burns St. Bistro

3. Lauren Ward • The Loose Caboose


click image florencecoffeeco_full_134216_layout-1-1.jpg



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