Pottery and fashion are not an expected combination. Throw in fresh, locally sourced meals, and you have something that is likely to be unique in this region.
The Threaded Cork is a boutique and beverage cafe in the Rue Magnolia in Biloxi that also sells Polish pottery. It's the creation of Andrea Jenkins, who discovered the concept in other parts of the country.
"It's a hybrid boutique," she said. "There are only a handful in the United States, in places like Austin (Texas), New York and Chicago. There's really nothing else like it here."
The idea is to enjoy a cup of specialty coffee or a beer while shopping, and Jenkins plans to add wine to the offerings. The Threaded Cork is in the Victorian-style cottage which previously housed Cafe Le Beignet, which is now on Lameuse Street. Jenkins and her husband bought the building at the end of October.
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Polish pottery adds to the unexpected. This pottery is, as its name suggests, made in Poland and hand decorated, often with several different but complementary patterns on one piece. The artwork can be simple dots to fruit such as strawberries to flowers with delicate trailing, vine-like stems. Cobalt blue often is used as the piece's main color.
"We lived in Italy 15 years ago and often went to Poland," said Jenkins, whose husband is a Navy Seabee. "I fell in love with Polish pottery then. It's beautiful; each piece is a work of art, plus it's oven, dishwasher and microwave safe."
The coffee she serves also reflects their life in Europe. Illy Coffee is an Italian brand, founded in 1933 in Trieste and still led by led by family members of the founder.
Brandi St. Cyr is the "Happy Hippie" half at the cottage. Originally from New Orleans, she grew up in Ocean Springs. She's worked in cafes and restaurants in the past, as well as the paint department of a home improvement store, "but I decided I wanted to do something different," she said.
She started doing pop-ups but wanted something more permanent. St. Cyr had met the Jenkinses by way of that paint department, as they were working on the cottage, and contacted Andrea after The Threaded Cork opened.
St. Cyr's ingredients "are as locally sourced as possible," including bread from Le Bakery in Biloxi and produce "from a friend's farm in Wiggins." Her offerings include sandwiches such as a Sweet Tea Chicken sandwich (marinated and smoked chicken on French bread with mayo, lettuce, homemade pickles and onion with colby Jack cheese), a Smoked Portabello sandwich (French bread or lettuce wrap with Kalamata olives, lettuce, tomato, onion, avocado spread, fresh basil and feta) and Lemon Caper Chicken Salad; the chicken salad is made with a light yogurt sauce.
St. Cyr also makes all-natural dog treats for pampered pooches.
Hours for The Threaded Cork, at 136 Rue Magnolia, Biloxi, are 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. The Happy Hippie, inside The Threaded Cork, offers food during the same hours.