He opened Whitetail Bicycles in May 2016 and started out selling custom bikes, adding a coffee shop two months later and local craft beer in 2017, Huysamen said. While he said the mesh of bikes, coffee and beer sounds odd, it is not uncommon in his home country of South Africa.
“In South Africa, it’s pretty common that wherever there’s a bike shop, they have coffee shops inside as well. In Austin, Texas, there’s a shop called Mellow Johnny’s—which is actually Lance Armstrong’s shop—and they do the same thing,” Huysamen said. “I saw how well it worked and I knew it would set us apart.”
Only local breweries within a 50-mile radius of Whitetail Bicycles are allowed to offer beer at the shop, Huysamen said. Jekyll Brewing in Alpharetta, Red Hare Brewing Co. in Marietta and Monday Night Brewing in Atlanta are all offered on tap at Whitetail Bicycles.
Additionally, the shop serves Stumptown Coffee Roasters coffee, which Huysamen said is based out of Portland, Oregon. Guests can order regular coffee; lattes; mochas; nitro cold brew; cappuccinos; macchiatos; americanos; and hot chocolate with regular, soy or almond milk as well as Ghirardelli flavors.
“My whole goal was to have a different kind of bike shop. There are so many strip-mall shops and generic shops that I tried to do something else,” Huysamen said. “I try to have a relationship with my customers and make them feel like they’re family.”
Huysamen, who is also a competitive and leisure cyclist himself, said Milton’s availability of open spaces and safety allows for a niche cycling community. Whitetail Bicycles specializes in custom bikes and started offering gravel bikes in the last year, which are specially made for all-terrain rides, Huysamen said.
Open Cycles is one brand of gravel bikes offered, and Whitetail is the only place in Georgia that sells this brand, according to Huysamen.
“They purely sell [bike] frames, and then you customize all parts and accessories. We’ve actually built a couple of them for people out of town, one in Birmingham, Alabama, and one in Nashville,” he said.
Despite serving a niche cycling community, Huysamen said he wants anyone who comes in the door to feel like they belong there because there is something there for all types of people.
“Whether you’re coming in for just coffee, just beer, just bikes or a combination of the three, we want you to feel like you’re part of the Whitetail family,” he said.
Even though the state is under a shelter-in-place mandate through April 30, bike shops like Whitetail Bicycles are considered essential businesses. During this time, store hours may vary each day, so call or visit the store's Facebook page for updates before visiting.
770 Mid Broadwell Road, Milton