As a woman approaches the newest bright-orange addition to NorthTown Mall's food court, she begins sharing stories about frequenting a popcorn stand with her friends when she went to college in California.
That's exactly what Cornexa Popcorn owner Roman Toshev is excited to offer Spokane with the opening of his new popcorn shop: flavors and colors of popcorn beyond classic, yellow buttered popcorn.
Toshev has always dreamed of opening his own business. Though he hadn't previously worked in the service industry, he wanted to combine America's love of popcorn with Spokane's need for more specialty popcorn options.
At Cornexa, customers can choose from one of the 10 flavors, which of the three bag sizes they prefer, and whether they want the popcorn in an open bag ($3.75-$5.75) to walk around and snack on or a twist-tied bag ($4-$5.50) to bring home.
"People love to give gifts and everybody loves popcorn, so I also wanted to have some special popcorn gift options," says Toshev.
Cornexa offers 1-gallon ($20) tins of one flavor, or 2-gallon tins ($35) filled with up to three flavors. Gift boxes hold two twist-tied bags of the same or different flavors ($15).
Some of Cornexa's flavors, such as garlic parmesan and jalapeño cheddar, are flavored by mixing powder with the popcorn after it's popped. Flavors like Evergreen State caramel and crispy green apple require a different machine that melts the flavoring before it can be mixed with the popped popcorn.
Currently, Toshev is Cornexa's only employee, but once he feels confident enough with the equipment and process of popping and flavoring the popcorn, he is excited to hire and teach new employees, along with hopefully opening other Cornexa locations around Spokane.
"I don't think people should have to go to a movie theater or a grocery store shelf to grab a bag of popcorn," says Toshev. "They can come here and sample a variety of spicy, savory or sweet flavors." ♦
Cornexa Popcorn • 4750 N. Division • Open Mon-Sat, 10 am-9 pm; Sun, 11 am-6 pm • facebook.com/cornexa • 474-0477