One of Ashley Dodson’s first paying jobs was in a coffeeshop in Culpeper, where she learned two big lessons. Number one, “The process of producing coffee is amazing. We did a lot of courses on how to make good coffee and where coffee comes from.” Number two, “I love serving people and bringing them fun experiences.”
Years later, when Dodson started pondering a food truck, her coffee experience came back to her. As it happened, a friend who was planning a wedding in 2018 asked her to serve up quality coffee drinks, and Brick Wall Coffee Bar was born.
“Weddings are our passion,” says Dodson, who noticed that the coffee at many weddings isn’t quite on par with the cuisine. “We wanted to do more than just a percolator in the corner.”
From behind a diminutive cart faced in white brick (a nod to the exposed-brick look of many independent coffeeshops), Dodson serves up coffee made to order: espresso-based drinks, mostly, but also teas, Italian sodas, pourover coffee, and cold brew.
“We try to do a tasting with all our couples so we can get a feel for their perfect cup,” she says. “A lot of people choose to make different flavors to fit their theme.” For one breakfast-themed wedding, she served up sprinkled-donut cappuccinos, blueberry muffin Italian sodas, and cinnamon roll lattes.
Based in Culpeper, Dodson—who’s also a homeschooling mom—uses organic fair-trade coffee beans roasted at Red Rooster Coffee Company in Floyd, as well as recycled and plant-based products.
Wedding packages are priced starting at $500 for two hours of coffee service, and vary based on guest count, travel time, and service time.
“Coffee is part of so many people’s daily life and even love story, so we wanted to continue that good coffee into the next part of your life,” Dodson says.