March 31, 2021 609 PM
PRESIDIO — Raquel Simental used to work for a broker in Presidio, but like people across the country, the coronavirus pandemic upended her ordinary life.
Simental got sick with coronavirus, ultimately ending up in the hospital for two months. When she finally got out, her job at the brokerage was gone. “I’m thankful that I’m okay,” Simental said of her experience with COVID-19. But still, losing her job was hard.
With her longtime friend and fellow Presidio native, Mayra Williams, Simental started looking into other ways to support herself. Around a month ago, they settled on the idea of opening a coffee shop.
“Both of us like desserts,” Simental explained, and there was “nothing like what we have right now in Presidio.” They wanted to offer American breakfast staples along with more high-end coffee drinks, including macchiatos, frappés and lattes.
While Presidio already has several restaurants, Simental and Williams thought they could fill a niche by offering more conventional American coffee-shop fare. They soon found a location they liked, across from Tom’s Service Station on O’Reilly Street.
“We were looking for a place [and] we saw this one,” Simental explained. At first, though, the place wasn’t available. But eventually the landlord “called us and decided he was going to rent it to us. And here we are.”
M&R Cafe had their inauguration party and ribbon cutting on Sunday and a grand opening on Monday. Simental was pleased with the turnout. “It went great,” she said. “We didn’t expect that many people.” But in the end, a lot of people showed up.
With open hours from Monday through Saturday from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m., the coffee shop also offers other amenities people might expect from cafes, including outdoor patio seating and free wifi.
The pair took normal breakfast cafe fare and gave them a twist, offering waffles on a stick and plates of miniature pancakes. Simental and Williams also added lunch menu items like burritos, chili dogs, hamburgers, and snacks of nachos, cheese fries and horchatas along with a Texas classic: Frito pie.
“Nobody sells them in Presidio,” Simental said of the Texas staple. That is, until now.