Coastal Coffee Company Is Family Affair

May 24, 2017
Photo by: Jack Reynolds

Coffee is a language in itself. 

— Jackie Chan

Jackie Chan is more than an actor; he is someone who understands the important role coffee plays in society. Luckily for Long Beach Island locals, seasonal homeowners and summer visitors, so do Cameron and Casey Zonfrilli. Their new coffeehouse, Coastal Coffee Company, opens this week in downtown Beach Haven after a soft opening earlier this month.

Although the business is a new venture for the couple, who married at the Little Egg Harbor Yacht Club in September 2015, they’re not new to the coffee industry or to Long Beach Island.

“Individually, we’ve been coming to Long Beach Island our whole lives,” said Cameron, who owns The Roost Coffee Co., founded in 2013, in the alphabet city section of Manhattan and its younger sibling, The Roost Outpost, located in one of the oldest buildings in Hoboken. He got into the coffee business after spending years in the restaurant industry. “My dad grew up down here in the summer.”

The business just makes sense for them, Casey said, observing they’ve been looking for a while for an opportunity to be part of the business community on Long Beach Island. She worked at Cafe Bacio when she was younger and loved the experience, and noted “we were at the right place at the right time” when the opportunity came to move into the space vacated by a previous coffeehouse.

“There is room for another coffeehouse in Beach Haven,” Cameron said, adding they’re picking up where the previous coffeehouse owners left off. “I think we need to acknowledge that.”

The history of the location aside, there’s no doubt the Coastal Coffee Company is brewing up a vibe of its own. Inspiration for the new venture came from a trip to Hawaii to celebrate their first wedding anniversary last fall, Casey said. That muse is infused in everything from the decor to the offerings.

It “catapulted the brand,” Cameron said, describing it as contemporary, fun and tropical. “It’s a family brand.”

Coastal Coffee Company features single origin, New Jersey roasted coffee – it’s roasted in Jersey City – from tropical destinations such as Ethiopia, Bali, Guatemala and Mexico. It will offer an array of specialty coffees, Nitro cold brew, and Hawaiian shaved ice as well as non-alcoholic coffee cocktails, he said.

“Coffee lovers are going to be happy to find an establishment” with a different product that runs the spectrum, Cameron said.

The biggest challenge for the new business will be to manage the ebb and flow of customers, something he doesn’t typically see with his other coffeehouses due to sheer volume of people living and working in those urban areas, he said.

“Somehow, we have to get in front of those people who vacation here for a week in summer,” Cameron said. “The locals will find us.”

Speaking of locals, Cameron and Casey are looking to hire young, local coffee enthusiasts to man the counter while learning the science behind that perfect cup of java so many are seeking. Coffee and other items from their one-of-a-kind menu will be served from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., seven days a week through Labor Day, but a number of factors could keep the coffeehouse open after the summer season ends, Cameron said.

— Gina G. Scala

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