Mike Melton, the owner of JOJO Coffeehouse, started his first business when he was a sophomore at Arizona State University. He sold it 15 years later, before opening JOJO Coffeehouse in 2018.
“I opened the doors to JOJO Coffeehouse with a vision for bringing my passion for coffee, food, and music together to build community,” he says. “I wanted to create a place where I’d like to hang out, and the idea for JOJO Coffeehouse began.”
His youngest brother, Andy, joined him to work with him, and now the two are celebrating five years since they opened the Scottsdale locale.
Here, he talks about what makes JOJO’s Coffeehouse different, Scottsdale, and living his best life.
You had a home security business but now own JOJO Coffeehouse. What made you switch industries?
I really enjoyed working with my staff in home security. I felt like we accomplished what I wanted to do in that industry. We reached the top 1% in the industry and experienced success for many years. After 15 years, I felt it was time to use my skills in another area. I took the leap into restaurant ownership because I believe food and drink are a great connector of people. There are a lot of things in this world that divide us, and yet we all have a lot more in common than we talk about or recognize in ourselves sometimes. When you sit down and share breakfast and coffee with friends and family, and connect with people in the community, this is really where my heart is. I am truly living my dream.
What sets JOJO Coffeehouse apart from other locales?
The JOJO Coffeehouse brand is unique. The words coffee shop and coffeehouse have become interchangeable, and I think our brand is creating a new identity of what a coffeehouse can truly be. We serve craft breakfast and brunch daily, a fun selection of espresso drinks, and our signature coffee and mimosa flights, plus we have live music every weekend. It’s an incredibly social environment. People can feel it. We’ve created something special here.
What’s your go-to coffee order?
My go-to is an iced americano, which is just espresso, water, and ice. I love coffee and tasting the espresso itself.
You’re also a musician! Can you tell us about that?
I didn’t play any instruments growing up. I just wrote poems and didn’t tell my friends about it because they would have probably given me a hard time. I learned the drums at 22, when I was inspired watching my brother and business partner Andy shredding the national anthem on the guitar in front of thousands when he was in high school. It got me excited and thinking hey, maybe I can do that. After playing the drums for a few years, I learned the guitar at 27, then a few years later, the piano. I really enjoy writing music, singing, and playing different instruments. It’s one of my true passions.
What do you love about Scottsdale?
I love the entrepreneurial spirit and the creativity of the people in Scottsdale. It is truly a remarkable place with a lot of bright, talented, and ambitious people working hard to live out their dreams. These things resonate with me on a deep level.
When you aren’t at JOJO, we’d find you …
You will most likely find me spending time with my fiancé Ali and my son, who is 9 years old. We like to go on walks with our dog, go to the park, and do different things to stay active.
One thing people would be surprised to know about you?
I sing and play guitar in a men’s group during the week at my church. It really allows me to connect with a lot of good men in our community who are looking to support one another to live our best lives.