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DuPont’s neighborhood gathering place

Mince Mercantile is your one-stop shop for deli, groceries, baked goods and gifts

Meet up for a breakfast or lunch date at Mince Mercantile. Photo credit: Missy Bouchat

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Every small town needs a local hangout, where friends come to gather, eat, shop, and catch up. Somewhere to go where you know the owners and employees, and can always count on delicious homemade goodies. Enter Mince Mercantile, the newly opened cafe/market/gift shop/bakery in downtown DuPont, or more aptly named, your new favorite hangout.

Located in the same building as America's Credit Union (ACU) off Wilmington Drive, Mince Mercantile celebrated their grand opening last fall. It was a labor of love for Virginia Mince and her husband Mike, an Army Special Forces retiree. Once the couple decided Washington would be their forever home after retirement, the next step was looking for the perfect space for Virginia to expand her cookie business, Sweetie McSweets.

Having been stationed at Joint Base Lewis-McChord multiple times, the couple knew that DuPont was where they wanted to settle down, so when their current space became available, they jumped at the opportunity. That's not to say the process was easy or they had to go it alone, as Virginia explained, "A lot of research went into finding vendors, learning about necessary permits and such. I have been blessed having friends that are knowledgeable in various industries to offer advice along the way."

Now that the store is open, visitors can see its uniqueness, and the variety of offers that sets them apart. Not only is Virginia still baking confectionary creations in the form of cookies, cupcakes, cheesecakes, as well as savory options like quiche and pies, but patrons can also feast on freshly made sandwiches, soups, salads and pasta dishes.

As if that isn't enough, you can also pick up grocery items including fresh produce, pantry staples, wine and, get ready for it, craft beer! If you're headed to a party and need to stop for some drinks, you can even pick up special handcrafted gifts made by local vendors.

The shop is open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, a work schedule that has been an adjustment for Virginia. "The biggest challenge has been going from a stay-at-home mom to working 60 hours a week. Thankfully my years as an active-duty spouse taught me how to logistically handle busy schedules. My greatest success has been my children telling me how proud they are of me," she said.

DuPont is lucky to have the Minces setting up shop downtown, as they are committed to supporting the local community, other small businesses, and nonprofit organizations.

If you haven't already grabbed some breakfast, lunch or incredible baked goods from Mince Mercantile yet, then put it on your "must-do" list. You'll love the ambience, the smiling faces, the convenience, and of course, the food.

Mince Mercantile, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday-Saturday; 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sunday, 1495 Wilmington Dr., DuPont, 253.302.5331

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