Father and seven-year-old daughter open Big Guns Coffee in downtown Tryon

Published 12:01 pm Monday, December 19, 2022

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TRYON–The latest addition to downtown Tryon is Big Guns Coffee, located at 152 N. Trade St. This family business is owned and operated by Marine veteran TShane Johnson and his entrepreneurial seven-year-old daughter, Charli. 


The idea for Big Guns Coffee came from Charli when her father, an inspirational speaker and author, asked her to come up with an idea for a business she’d like to start. A few months later, the idea had turned into a mobile coffee trailer, serving Spartanburg and surrounding areas. After moving to Mill Spring and expanding their operation, growing their own beans hydroponically and hand-roasting coffee blends, they opened their shop on N. Trade St. 

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The shop is named Big Guns in reference to big muscles. Johnson is a former world record-holder in two categories, including push-ups in an hour, cranking out 3,095 reps in that time. The two work together, making the business an authentic learning experience for Charli, where she is involved in all aspects, from bookkeeping to service. She saves all her tips to achieve her future goals, one of which is building her own home. 


“Leaving her a business that can grow and the entrepreneurial skills to prosper, that’s different than just money,“ TShane says. “That’s a legacy, and it’s much more valuable.”


Big Guns Coffee offers a wide variety of products and merchandise. They specialize in their own brand of freshly roasted coffee, which boasts higher-than-average levels of caffeine to keep their customers going all day. Along with their fresh coffee and espresso, they also offer signature lattes such as the Salty Dog Latte, and a variety of smoothies, teas, and seasonal drinks, including hot chocolate.  


“It’s like being on the stage 65 times a day,” Johnson adds about Big Guns Coffee Shop’s positive message. “You can turn people’s day around, from negative to positive, before they even take a sip.”


All of their packaging is biodegradable and environment-friendly, and all of the shop’s kitchen waste, such as eggshells and coffee grounds, is composted for local gardens and farms. One of the shop’s key principles Johnson abbreviates as G-R-S-R, or “Grow-Roast-Serve-Recycle.” 


Big Guns Coffee is currently open 7:30 a.m. to  5 p.m., Wednesday through Saturday, with plans to expand hours soon. You can learn more about Big Guns Coffee at their website, biggunscoffee.com, and on social media @Biggunscoffee on IG and Facebook.