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Former owner of longtime Bay Shore cafe Milk and Sugar plans to revive it as a pop-up

A layered cherry cheesecake at Barn Door 49,

A layered cherry cheesecake at Barn Door 49, the owner of Milk & Sugar's former restaurant in Bay Shore.  Credit: Yvonne Albinowski

Change is the only constant, especially in Bay Shore: While gastropub Barn Door 49 is no longer, former owner Gina Russo is resurrecting its precursor, Milk and Sugar, as a dessert-and-coffee pop-up.

"I miss [Milk and Sugar] very much, so I'm bringing it back for everyone who misses it, too," said Russo, who started Milk and Sugar at 49 Main St. in 1999 with then-husband and business partner Lenny Jaworowski. The homey cafe helped spur downtown Bay Shore's culinary revival and operated until the fall of 2017, when the pair closed it to make way for Barn Door 49.

Barn Door 49, which had a modern farmhouse aesthetic and upscale comfort food, closed last fall. Russo still owns and runs the longtime catering and event space Victorian Room across the street, and it's there she'll hold the occasional Milk and Sugar pop-up; though Russo stopped short of naming a start date, she implied it would be within weeks. Cappuccino and specialty teas, plus sweets such as chocolate cake and s'mores fondue, will make appearances. "We have a lot of lovely restaurants and bars in Bay Shore, but I think we're missing a place for families to come with their kids for a cup of tea and dessert," Russo said. The Victorian Room will also be open to the public on St. Patrick's Day and for brunch on both Mother's and Father's Day, she added.

As for 49 Main St., it is slated to become a new Mexican restaurant — more details soon.

Victorian Room, 36 W. Main St., Bay Shore. 631-969-3655.

A previous version of this story listed an incorrect name for Milk and Sugar cafe.

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