Poncho’s Cafe & Catering

By design, Poncho’s Café and Catering is warm, friendly and always welcoming. Owners Doug and Arlene Stuart believe that’s the key to the success of their business. “We are strongly independent,” says Doug, “and when we purchased this business in 2018, we knew exactly what we wanted to create.”  

Poncho’s is a community-based eatery that offers Stick in the Mud coffee which comes from Sooke. “We wanted to offer terrific coffee from a local roastery and are so happy with the people and the beans from Stick in the Mud. They serve our needs perfectly,” says Doug.

Poncho’s also offers locally-made baked goods, sandwiches made in-house, quiches and soups made entirely from scratch. “We seek to serve the finest of locally-produced goods in a friendly social environment,” says Doug.  But he and his wife dish out far more than excellent coffee and quality food. “What we sell,” says Doug, “are relationships.  We aim to know people’s names, remember their preferences, and take an interest in their stories.” Doug, with 15 years’ experience in the food and beverage field, works full-time at the café, while Arlene works part-time when she’s not at her full time position Royal Roads University. They are a remarkable couple.

When the pandemic hit, the couple made three important decisions: to stay open, follow all recommended protocols and stay focused. “That really paid off,” Doug says. “Our regulars viewed us as a little bit of normal in a world that was anything but normal. We actually got busier during the lockdown and thoroughly enjoyed seeing people’s pleasure in what we offered.” 

They have nothing but praise for the City of Langford and the City’s pro-business attitude and support. “Once the pandemic hit, they promptly provided arrows and stickers, all free, to help us completely adhere to Dr. Bonnie Henry’s recommendations. If I phone,” Doug continues, “I always hear back the same day! They are so supportive, so helpful!”

In the two years since Doug and Arlene purchased Poncho’s, they have watched the business go from strength to strength.  It is now a vital hub in the Langford community and the two owners couldn’t be happier. As Doug puts it, “When we purchased Ponchos, we knew we wanted to make it a very special place. With the help of our great customers and the support of the City, I believe, we’ve done just that!”

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