Our Story


The story of River Road Coffeehouse began in early 2003 when Mark Forman asked his son, David, to consider partnering with him in the coffeehouse business.  Father and son, Mark and David Forman, had a vision of serving the best coffee and espresso products while promoting the “value” of community.  Mark’s travels as a regional manager helped him develop a love of independent coffeehouses…and the Arabica Coffeehouse on the campus of Case Western Reserve University had inspired him to seek and “old house” venue for the venture.  On the outskirts of Granville, there was an 1860’s farmhouse that had been home to several iterations of a retail coffee shop…including Pepperbury Cottage, The Gourmet Trading Post and the Granville Coffeehouse.  The Formans proposed an asset purchase to the owner of the coffeehouse…and on April 2, 2003, opened for business.


David quickly developed an interest in the chemistry and preparation of coffee and the mechanics of espresso machines.  David was instrumental in promoting the importance of professional barista skills. In early 2009, David had the vision to fully embrace the company’s coffee expertise by expanding into the sourcing and roasting of coffee.  A small 2K Ambex Roaster was installed in the Gathering Lounge at the Granville store and “one line coffee” was created.  In 2010, a large Ambex Roaster was purchased and installed in Heath at the one line coffee “Roastery”.  In 2012, one line coffee became an independent company and Licking County’s only hometown commercial coffee roaster.  In 2013, the growing demands of coffee sourcing required the full time commitment of Dave and Mark…and daughter Stacey Forman-Donnelly joined the River Road Coffeehouse as Managing Partner.  She partners with Renee Shaw (Regional Manager of Operations) and Susan Herriott (Regional Administrator) to oversee the four coffeehouses operating in Licking and Knox Counties.