While times change, menus are updated, but for two sisters, the commitment to fresh, quality lunch plates remains the same.

 “What we do is fresh, not out of a can. It’s homemade and all our desserts are made in-house. Our focus is on the quality for what we do for lunch,” said Mercantile Café co-owner Renee Holt.

For six years, Holt has shared the day-to-day operation (except Tuesdays and Saturdays) at the Mercantile with her sister, Mysty Clouse. Clouse’s daughter Alie Seigmund, is the in-house baker and paints each of the seasonal murals that greet customers as they enter the restaurant.

“The deli case and the bakery case are just on top of what we do,” Holt said. “It’s all about feeding people, quick hit fresh lunch.”

The Mercantile is open each Sunday for after-church meals and each Friday night the doors open in the evening for a fish fry.

For more than five years The Mercantile has watched the business grow as the downtown area has blossomed.

“The community has been super supportive — not only of me, but the whole downtown area. Five years ago there wasn’t a whole lot down here, but with all of us working together, it takes everyone working together to get people aware of what’s going on.”

Holt finds the relationship with her customers is essential. She works to greet personally each party that walks in the door.

“Monday, we had a group in from Russia. Who would have thought?” she said.

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