The dish on Long Island's restaurant and food scene.
The closest place to get coffee in the Shirley and Mastic area for years has been fast-food restaurants like Dunkin’ Donuts and McDonald’s.
Until last Friday, when a new coffeehouse, Tend Coffee, opened in Shirley, adjacent to Friendly’s.
The 875-square-foot shop, certified by the Northeast Organic Association, is run by the husband-and-wife team of Susan and Daniel Kennedy. Susan Kennedy has managed a number of Starbucks stores, including one in East Hampton, and the couple has sold coffee roasts with beans from Latin America, Africa and Indonesia at farmers markets and wholesale through a warehouse in Center Moriches.
“It runs through my veins,” said Susan Kennedy, 35, of Moriches, who remembers making Dunkin’ Donuts runs for friends as a teen. “I’ve just always liked coffee.”
So far, the shop is minimalistic, with the Geometrico roaster the star of the show. Susan Kennedy hopes to add an “art wall” soon to feature local artists’ work, and she’s gotten multiple requests to host music nights. The shop sells homemade pastries such as chocolate scones, coffee cake, blueberry muffins, croissants, chocolate chip cookies, brownies and toffee almond bars.
The Kennedys chose the name Tend, Susan Kennedy said, because, “We thought, you know what, the farmers tend to the land, we tend to the roast and our customers tend to their souls. It’s full circle, and it speaks to all levels.”
“It’s always been a passion,” she added. “I’ve always liked the environment and the people. It’s like being a bartender without the liability. And the area needs it.”
Tend Coffee is at 924 Montauk Hwy., Shirley, 631-521-0893.