MoCA in East Walnut Hills Closes

It’s a Blogiversary!
January 4, 2012
Review: Chef’s Cafe
January 9, 2012

Several readers have asked about MoCA in East Walnut Hills, as it closed rather abruptly. Here’s what I found out. MoCA, a mainstay of East Walnut Hills for four years, closed December 30 due to “irresolvable differences” with the landlord. According to a post by owner Joe Balbo on their Facebook page, “We hope that the landlord has great things planned for the space as I believe the loss of MoCA will leave a hole in the neighborhood as it has my heart.”


  1. lirie says:

    that’s terrible news! MoCA is the only coffee shop in the area.. I hope the owner will find a nice place to set up shop again!
    Happy Anniversary Julie and Terry!!

  2. Sam Walston says:

    Dang, I live in EWH and Moca was the community center for the neighborhood.  

  3. Ploehsjr says:

    I am going to deeply miss MoCA.  I have been living in Walnut Hills for 2 years and would stop in at least 1-2 days a week, some rough weeks 4-5 times 🙂 It had a great vibe with friendly service and a great culminating place for the neighbors to mingle.  Joe I wish you a lot of luck and hope you can resurface.  Keep us posted! 

  4. jj says:

    we drove by for coffee on monday and were stupefied to see you guys weren’t there! please stay in EWH if possible!

  5. Tony says:

    Good News!!
    The Coffee Emporium has been contacted by the landlord and Sandy (past manager now owner) of Moca.
    It will be called Cafe deSales and will have Coffee Emporium’s delicious coffee with our training and systems in place to help them out.
    They will use this opportunity to clean out and “freshen up” the space.
    The Coffee Emporium will be bringing in new coffee making equipment in the next week or so. And will be doing an extensive re-training of the staff so that this great space will serve amazing coffee drinks.
    We are very excited to be a part of this new incarnation of this great space.

  6. Sarah says:

    I will miss moca very much. Loved all their specials and the people that came in and out of there.

    Kinda confused about the message from Coffee Emporium.

  7. Chris says:

    Is Sandy the other owner and friend that Joe had irreconcilable differences with?

    It’s strange that Moca closed so abruptly but can now convert to a CE. I love CE and am glad a good coffee shop will still be there but it sounds like the Moca owners had a falling out or there was a power play by an owner and landlord.

    Tony, do you work for CE?

    • Tony says:

      I actually own CE.
      We are helping Sandy the manager of moca to reopen.
      This will be her store.  Please let me be clear here.  We are just helping. 
      Like 7 Hills Coffee, Coffee Break, Lookout Joe’s, Tazza Mia or even La Terza would do.  We are selling our coffee to them wholesale and offering support.
      the landlord is the person that Joe is referring to. 

    • Janet says:

      I am glad about this! Unfortunately, I didn’t think the coffee was that stellar at Moca, so having CE take over training and support is great!

  8. Guest says:

    say it aint so joe 🙁

  9. Jay says:

    Maybe it’s the chronology, but not sure why people are ignoring Tony’s comments. Sounds like MoCA is back on track with similar (if not identical) ownership, simply with some reinvestment and refocus. As a childhood resident of E Walnut Hills and an Eagle to boot, glad to hear things are pushing forward. 

  10. Schmiedgasse says:

    Businesses, what few they are, at Madison and Woodburn , are in and out faster than that actress Lndsy L. goes in an out of jail.
    The landlord ,seemingly, has had many disputes with their tenants over the few years since the building was completed.
    I hope that the new owners have wheels on their equipment.

    • Chris says:

      Businesses in the Oakley building that Oakley Cycles & Seneca were in have a similar problem with their landlord.  The inside scoop is that the guy is a terrible curmudgeon and even worse businessman.  Terms & conditions keep changing.  Rent keep changing.  Makes it almost impossible to succeed & plan for the long term unless you’re a cash-cow like Deweys.  Sadly, these Oakley storefronts have been sitting empty for some time now.  It’d be nice to have a landlord who works with businesses to improve the neighborhood rather than have the empty spaces.

  11. Have a great love to MoCA.Really will miss MoCA very much…

  12. LH says:

    will there be food like Moca had?  or just coffee? 

  13. Anonymous says:

    anyone know how to get a hold of joe B?

  14. Silverdare says:

    @Schmiedgasse and Tony: You hit the nail right on the head. No businesses can stay in that building for long. The landlord drives them all away. What happened to Joe Balbo will continue happening over and over again. He drove the pharmacy out, he drove Curves out, and he drove MoCA out. Sandy hasn’t a clue what she’s getting into. They won’t be getting my business.

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