Twenty years ago, a handful of customers arrived at the door of an old house tucked among the trees on La Posta Road in Taos. The first came for counseling and mediation services provided by local therapist David Stewart, but when Stewart diversified his business into a cyber café in the mid-2000s, the simple pleasure of enjoying a cup of coffee in the sanctuary he had built quickly became the main attraction – one that may now be gone for good.
“Wired is closed indefinitely,” a sign posted to the front door of the café reads.
Stewart said that he was forced to close the café due to an unusually slow winter season that had put his operations in the red. A recent break-in made it difficult to consider taking out a loan to keep things going, he said.
He will continue to provide the counseling services he has always offered, while other parts of the building will serve as art exhibition areas and meeting spaces that will be rented out to the public.
But Stewart stopped short of calling the closure of the widely loved café permanent.
While grabbing a cup of coffee on Sunday at another Taos java joint, The Coffee Spot, Wired manager Justin Johns-Kaysing said that Wired will be closed for the remainder of the “winter season,” but a slight chance remains that it may reopen at a later date – depending on whether or not he and Stewart can make up for losses suffered in recent months.
“It’s the same story as any other business at this point,” Johns-Kaysing said. “There’s been so little snow this season, we just weren’t getting the tourist dollars.”
Some of that revenue had gone into extensive upkeep for the large building that housed the café, including feeding the verdant gardens that grow around it and snake through its sitting areas.
The diverse set of services Wired provided grew in similar fashion over the years, creating an eclectic mix that made the café unique. On any given day, one could witness a lecture taking place in one corner of the building, a meditation group in another, a teacher providing after-school tutoring at a table nearby and nearly always a few players hunched over a chessboard at the front entrance.
Stewart said in prior interviews that while this diversity was intended to drive business growth, it also presented its challenges – specifically, how to make all of these differing components work together in harmony.
He wished to thank the public for its support over the two decades he and his staff made it happen.
Customers stopping by to read the closure notice on the front door will likely remain hopeful Stewart and Johns-Kaysing will find the right balance to keep the doors open for at least a few more.
“We love Taos,” Stewart said. “We love providing a sanctuary environment for the public, a place where people can feel safe and welcome, and I’m sure if people want to come over and sit in the gardens, they’ll be welcome.”