Business Matters 2020 - Page 31

On the FAST TRACK Entrepreneurs under40 Heather Harbison Heather Harbison: 2020 has been a year of change for entrepreneur Heather Harbison STORY BY MIKE ELSWICK | PHOTO BY GINIA HOOPER AT A GLANCE Transformation could be the theme of the year for Heather Harbison in 2020. The Shelby County entrepreneur and owner of TCS Bistro said the evolution of the former location of The Century Shoppe into TCS Bistro represents a lot of vision, planning, support and hard work. In addition to transforming a former Tenaha Street residence into an eatery, she’s adapted to restrictions placed on businesses due to the coronavirus pandemic, moved her business from leased space to property she owns and has worked with a variety of contractors in getting the doors open. Heather purchased The Century Shoppe in 2015 from Selena Watson. One year later she moved operations from Shelbyville Street to the Hurst Street. When she purchased the business, a small sandwich shop was part of the shop. “Actually I did not plan on being in the restaurant business,” she says. “I originally bought The Century Shoppe for the home décor and gifts,” she says. “When I got involved with it, I fell in love with the restaurant side.” That has resulted in a major shift in her operations out of the home décor and gift arena and into the fine dining niche side of operations. “This is a lot more work than if I’d stayed with the home décor side of the business,” she says. “But I love it and I love the fast pace.” As Heather saw opportunity, her vision changed direction and her dream has been adapted with the times. “This has become a dream,” she says. Towards the end of achieving her new vision, Heather realized she had a strong support base. “I thank my family and all my friends for all the hard work they’ve helped me put in,” Harbison says. “And I thank the community because without you all, I would not be here.” She also says being raised in a food business family helped open her eyes to the work required and customer service skills needed to succeed. “My parents had a restaurant and grocery store businesses from the time I was little,” she says. Heather was raised in Tenaha with the family operating locations in both Tenaha and Logansport. “God has blessed my family very much,” Heather says. “And, I have an excellent staff, including Jennifer Forrest, who has been with me for six years — I really count on them.” Along the way of getting TCS Bistro opened, she spent extensive time working with contractors, equipment vendors and others involved in making the needed modifications in the Tenaha Street property from a home to a functioning dining spot. “Every day something new pops into my mind and I jot it down in a little notebook I keep in my truck,” she says. “I was trying for a rustic, industrial, vintage look with a focus on old Shelby County history.” Heather says she was involved every step of the way in designing the location and laying out the kitchen, dining area, bakery display counter and more. “My goal was to put my own personal touch in it,” she says. In addition to decorating the restaurant, her stamp is also on the expanded menu. “We kept our basic menu and have added some items, like appetizers and a few more menu items,” Heather says. With the move, she has expanded the hours to 7 a.m.— 7 p.m., Monday through Friday. Breakfast is served from opening until 10 a.m. The menu features items like loaded oatmeal,toasted bagels with cream cheese, quiche, parfaits, homemade cinnamon rolls and baked goods. To top off food items, TCS Bistro has an extensive line of gourmet flavored coffees, lattes and frappes. On the food end, Heather has a focus on not only serving tasty dishes, but also healthy offerings like salads and low carb or no carb sandwiches and wraps. Soups and daily specials are also offered. While the dining room and bakery are closed on weekends, the venue is available on weekends for parties, receptions and other special events. WHAT: TCS Bistro WHO: Locally owned and operated by Heather Harbison WHERE: 315 Tenaha Street Center, TX 75935 WHEN: Monday-Friday 7:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m. drive-thru/inside dining PHONE: (936) 598-4453 FACEBOOK: @TCS Bistro Business MATTERS | 2020 Fall Edition 31