The Power of Community Connections

Cibo and Equator Coffees Founders

“It feels like sending Cibo off to college,” Tera Arcona says. For 10 years she and husband Alfredo Arcona championed the local food shed and community connection at their Sausalito cafe. Now it’s been rebranded as Sausalito Equator. The couple had found their available time stretched to the limit: he’s executive chef at Sausalito’s Angelino Restaurant, and she has been its pastry chef in addition to running Cibo (chee-bo) and its coffee and pastry programs. They sought a partner, another Marin small business, to manage Cibo and its programs and carry on their mission of providing a local gathering spot centered around coffee, food and friends. Equator Coffees’ Helen Russell and Brooke McDonnell answered the call.

“A coffee shop is a town connection point,” Arcona says. “The local community has been very willing to share Cibo with the tourist community. It works.” Russell and McDonnell agree: “We look for iconic spaces and community we can build our ethos around,” Russell says. “We know Cibo champions kindness and connection through the portal of coffee.”

Sausalito Equator will move all coffee roasting to its new facility in San Anselmo, and other changes, like more outdoor seating and expanded hours, are in the works for the Sausalito spot. Never fear: the beloved breakfast and lunch menu and Arcona’s signature croissants, tartlets and buns are not going anywhere (and her wholesale business will retain the name Cibo). With more time to focus on her pastries, Arcona can now provide them to all Equator locations, including Sausalito’s. And the coffee menu will expand to include Equator’s “shakerato” and a bevy of bean roasts like single-origin espresso.


This article originally appeared in Marin Magazine’s print edition with the headline: “Connection Point”.