Mockingbird is husband and wife William Johnson and Melissa Axelrod of San Francisco, CA, and their two kids Elodie (6) who is Melissa’s step-daughter and Lily (1)
William grew up in Southern California but has called San Francisco home for over 20 years.
Melissa is a San Francisco native who grew up in the upper Haight and now lives just over the hill in the lower Haight.
William and Melissa met when they worked side by side in the restaurant industry. They bonded over food and before long a romance began to develop…a marriage, a restaurant and a child later is where we are in a blur of the last 5 years. Which included the discovery that we were not able to sell beer or wine at our current location which lead to an over 30% drop in sales all while very I was very pregnant with Lily. That we have been able to keep Mockingbird afloat for almost two years without alcohol sales is no small feat. We have become adept at doing more with less, all while gathering more loyal customers and positive press. It is clear people love our food and the environment we have created.
Our dream for the future is to continue and expand what we have created with Mockingbird. A successful family run restaurant, contributing to the Oakland community, supporting local farmers, fisherman, and ranchers who we have developed relationships with over the years.
This loan is special because:
More about this loan
Mockingbird, a farm to table restaurant opened in 2013 on the edge of Uptown Oakland to great reviews and quickly won over the neighborhood and generated a loyal customer base. It became known as an atmospheric low-key date spot with a friendly vibe.
Melissa & William, created a restaurant with a comfortable, informal atmosphere with great service and stellar food and drinks; a spot to grab a sandwich for lunch, meet with friends for happy hour drinks and snacks, as well as a place to celebrate life’s milestones.
We have proven our tenacity and resilience in a tough business under unusually challenging circumstances, including operating in its last 2 years without the ability to serve alcoholic beverages, resulting in over a 30% drop in gross sales.
That we have survived without alcohol sales is no small feat. We have become adept at doing more with less, all while gathering more loyal customers and positive press. It is clear people love our food and the environment we have created. The Mockingbird brand is alive and thriving.
We are expand by relocating to a larger, more centrally located building at 416 13th Street, between Broadway and Franklin in downtown Oakland. The restaurant will welcome current and new guests into a comfortable and lively atmosphere, combine a strong, inviting cocktail scene with inventive seasonally based cuisine.
We are proud of many details of our business but the most personally gratifying for me is the journey of our first dishwasher. He only lasted a couple months but came back to us about a year ago and has since become one of our most valued and trusted team members. He worked his way up from dishwasher our lead line cook. We look forward to continue to give him more responsibility in the new location.
What is the purpose of this loan?
While this loan won’t cover all the costs of the relocation it is a key pice of the puzzle in making it happen. We will use this money to pay for start up costs.
Attorneys to draw up legal papers so we can get investors. Estimated at 5k Initial architecturally plans & permitting 5k
This loan will enable us to get to the next step in our plan of being able to involve investors and be ready to go with construction so as not to delay opening our doors longer then necessary. The faster we can open our doors the faster we will be able to pay back our leaders.
This loan will take a bit of pressure off of our family as we have been running our business and home on a shoe string since we experienced the drop in sales due to the loss of revenue from beer and wine sales.
Years in operation: More than 5 years
A loan of $10,000 helps Melissa relocate and expand our farm-to-table, family restaurant.