Jenavieve Verley

Jenavieve Verley with the new Creamy Spug

FORT MYERS, Fla. (Sept. 21, 2015) – Bennett’s Fresh Roast will celebrate National Coffee Day Tuesday, Sept. 29 by offering free coffee and unveiling a new coffee creation inspired by one of its star employees.

Beginning at 6 a.m., the downtown Fort Myers and Sanibel locations will offer one free 12-ounce brewed coffee per person until 11 a.m.

In addition, Bennett’s newest coffee drink will be available beginning Sept. 29. Inspired by downtown Fort Myers’ employee and Fort Myers High School student Jenavieve Verley, the Creamy Spug is a concoction of delicate cinnamon flavors including two shots of Bennett’s smooth fresh roasted espresso blend poured into steamed and frothed half and half (breve, poured macchiato style), then topped with whipped cream and sprinkled with cinnamon.

According to Bennett’s owner Bob Grissinger, former local morning disc jockey C. David Bennett, the idea for the Creamy Spug resulted from a dream Jenavieve had one night.

In the dream, a customer came in and ordered four of the then fictional Creamy Spugs and left quite upset when Jenavieve didn’t know how to make them. After she told her prank-loving boss about the dream the next day, he texted a number of customers and asked them to come in and request the still fictional Creamy Spug to go.

“She was such a good sport that I had to put my creative cap on and actually come up with a real Creamy Spug for us to add to our menu,” Grissinger said. “And, there’s no better day than National Coffee Day to make Jenavieve’s dream become a reality as we begin serving the Creamy Spug.”

There are many legendary accounts of how coffee first came to be, but the earliest credible evidence of either coffee drinking or the knowledge of the coffee tree appears in the middle of the 15th century in the Sufi monasteries around Mokha in Yemen. It was there where coffee seeds were first roasted and brewed, in a similar way it is prepared today. Yemeni traders brought coffee back to their homeland, from Ethiopia, and began to cultivate the seed. In 1670, coffee seeds were smuggled out of the Middle East by Baba Budan, as he strapped seven coffee seeds onto his chest. The first plants grown from these smuggled seeds were planted in Mysore. It was then that coffee spread to Italy, the rest of Europe, Indonesia and the Americas.

Bennett’s Fresh Roast has prided itself on its fresh-from-scratch donuts made daily and being the only Fort Myers donut shop to serve fresh roasted coffee from the finest beans resulting in the most flavorful and freshest cup of coffee around. For the past seven years, the Bennett’s team has been known for unveiling delicious new donut concoctions from flavors including maple bacon, pumpkin spice, maple toffee crunch, s’mores and more. The shop has also become known for surprising offerings like its limited sale (which sold out) of Kopi Luwak coffee, often called “cat-poo coffee” after the prized bean from Indonesia that’s eaten by wild civets, passed through the animal’s digestive tract, and then collected and processed for brewing.

In addition to fresh roasted coffee and hand-cut-from-scratch donuts, Bennett’s also offers fresh desserts from Grissinger’s own recipe book including praline bread pudding and lemon bars, giving area residents an alternative for afternoon treats. Bennett’s also features packaged whole bean or ground coffees, breakfast muffins, oatmeal and breakfast sandwiches. On the weekends, Bennett’s Strata (a layered baked breakfast dish) is a regular sellout at its downtown location, while the Strata is available every day on Sanibel. The Sanibel shop also offers a pancake dish for breakfast. Tea lovers may choose from a large variety of Harney & Sons Fine Teas. Lunch offerings including paninis, soups, sandwiches, three signature salads and Bennett’s ‘Chicken & Donut’ and ‘Donut Dog.’ Bennett’s Sanibel location also offers Artisan Gelato by Norman Love beginning at 11 a.m. daily until closing.

Bennett’s downtown Fort Myers shop is located at 2011 Bayside Parkway and is open Monday through Sunday from 6 a.m. to 3 p.m. Bennett’s Sanibel shop is located at 1020 Periwinkle Way and is open Monday through Sunday from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.

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