Thomas at the Book Shop

    • lehigh thomas at bookstore

Thomas at the Book Shop recently found its home within the Moravian Book Shop and will bring back the allure of a classy, casual dining experience to the historical site. Owner and entrepreneur Thomas Rutherford had built years of experience as a chef at numerous restaurants in the Northeast, as well as a culinary instructor at the renowned Northampton Community College culinary program, before establishing Thomas at the Book Shop.

Thomas at the Book Shop offers soups, salads, small plates, craft sandwiches, and delicious house-made sweets and treats in an inviting and picturesque corner of the Moravian Book Shop, the country’s oldest bookstore located in downtown Bethlehem.

Thomas originally contacted the Lehigh University Small Business Development Center (SBDC) seeking to open a small restaurant. The SBDC provided guidance with the location decision by researching demographic information for various areas within the City of Bethlehem. Thomas also received market research on current trends in the casual restaurant industry.

When Thomas was offered an opportunity to take over the restaurant inside the Moravian Book Shop, SBDC consultants worked with him to develop both a business plan and financial projections to present to a lender. SBDC consultants were dedicated to helping Thomas understand the financial requirements of launching the business and assisted with financial forecasting models.

The cash flow models were instrumental in helping him understand the impacts of incremental changes in revenue and expense assumptions on the business’s overall financial picture and in quantifying the financial requirements of the start-up.

Thomas at the Book Shop was open for Musikfest, but held a Grand Opening Event on August 28.

Chef Thomas Rutherford uses his education, seventeen years of experience, and desire to provide a dining experience that compliments the Book Shop’s historical atmosphere to run his restaurant!