Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Rattlesnake Trading Company closes; could be yours for $175,000

Posted By on Wed, Feb 27, 2013 at 10:57 AM

Normally, mid-morning would be one of Rattlesnake Trading Company’s busiest times of day, as all manner of adventurers on their way out of town and hungover locals on their way back to civilization stop in to stock up on coffee, beer or, more often than not, one of the store’s signature sandwiches. But last Saturday, the espresso machine sat idle. There were no employees making sandwiches behind the counter. A sign on the window advertised that the business is for sale.

Rattlesnake Trading Company shuttered about a week and a half ago, leaving its fans to grapple with the loss. “Now there’s no place for a good espresso at this time in the morning,” says James Quigley of the Kingfisher Fly Shop, which sits a couple doors down from RTC. “It’s pretty sad.”

Over the years, the convenience store has earned a reputation among locals as being the place to go for a quick and quality breakfast or to-go sandwiches for later on the river. RTC’s “breakfast thingy” in particular, a toasted English muffin loaded with egg, bacon or sausage, and other assorted toppings, garnered a devoted following. In 2007, the Indy honored it with a staff pick in its Best of Missoula issue for “Best Reason to Get Out of Bed in the Morning.”

Attempts to contact RTC owner Robert Blomgren were unsuccessful. Missoula real estate agent Mike Marbut, who’s listed the property for sale, says Blomgren put the property on the market nearly a month ago for $175,000.

Marbut says RTC leases its land from Montana Rail Link for $200 a month. In light of the fact that the sale price includes store contents, such as the espresso machine, Marbut thinks it’s a pretty good deal. “The non-perishable inventory is still there,” he says. “It could be whatever a person wants.”

While it remains to be seen if a buyer will come forward and, as many hope, revive the breakfast thingy, it is clear that locals will continue to mourn.

“Almost every day I was over there,” says the Green Hanger’s Gloria Clark. “They were like an old friend.”

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