Mia Bossie, Owner and Operator of 99 Bottles on Walnut Avenue says she wanted to work for herself. But spend any amount of time with her in her Downtown Santa Cruz business and it’s clear who she is working for. Sitting at the Bar, and throughout the restaurant there is a tight-knit community of friends that you can’t help feel a part of the minute you walk in the place. We had a beer with Mia and asked her about running a beer business in Downtown Santa Cruz.
Downtown: Okay, why did you decide to start your own business Downtown? How did you get here?
Mia: I wound up Downtown, because after commuting for over 20 years to San Jose, I found out I was losing my job, our company was sold to a company back east. I came home and told my husband that I didn’t want to work for anybody ever again, that I felt disconnected from my community and that I wanted to own a local business. I used to be able to walk down. I mean after over 20 years I could walk down the street and I would know nobody, now I can’t walk two blocks without saying hi to people that I know and it just, it makes me feel good to be more connected and more involved.
Downtown: What are your favorite things you do everyday at work?
Mia: Part of the fun of being downtown and being connected is I love being with our guests down here. My favorite part of the day is the 30 minutes that I give the bartender a break and I get to chat with our guests and I get to introduce people to each other. So many people have had their first dates here, got married or got engaged here. I’ve gotten people jobs by connecting people at the bar and just. I love talking to people
Downtown: At what in your life did you learn about your field of work. What called you to it?
Mia: It’s kind of funny how I wound up here. I was a waitress, when I was 15, in a little coffee shop for a few years and then I left hospitality and I’ve been in manufacturing for years and years and years. but my husband and I, our passion is beer. We’ve been home brewing since 1992. And so when I did start looking for a business, this just seemed like the perfect fit: beer, people, food. What else?