FAIR HAVEN — With the closing of the Kinder Way Café location in Fair Haven, one local couple said they weren’t about to let the storefront remain empty.
Herman Spencer and Deborah Fallon said their new project, the Rosewood Café and Store, would be their attempt to resurrect the classic board game and penny candy country store and add it to a breakfast, lunch and dinner café serving everything from pulled pork to kombucha.
“My mother’s name was Rosemary and my father’s name was Wood, so I’ve been thinking for a few years, if I ever had a business, I’d call it Rosewood,” Fallon said.
Spencer and Fallon said they hope to open the retail portion of their store first, and launch the Rosewood Café’s restaurant by June 1.
The floors are sanded and polished, and the couple are working on getting their licenses in order to open a small shop whose shelves are lined with books and counters are stacked with knick-knacks, local products, and toys for kids to play with.
In the back, the couple plans to set up an old-fashioned candy operation with everything from giant Jawbreakers to lemon heads, giant swirl lollipops, and both maple and regular cotton candy.
In a regular soda-shoppe fashion, they said they’ll have root beer on tap for root beer floats, homemade ice cream and creemees too.
“Ninety percent of everything for sale in here will be under $10,” Spencer said. “Including most of the menu.”
The café will be open seven days a week, beginning at 6 a.m., the shop will be open for grab-and-go breakfast sandwiches and burritos, with a variety of hot and cold sandwiches and soups.
“Pulled pork, BLT’s, but we’re also going to keep some vegan options,” Spencer said.
“We want to include everybody,” Fallon said.
Fallon said there will also be customized baked potatoes with a variety of toppings, daily specials, salads, homemade pot pies and a daily vegetarian chili.
Spencer said they would have some baked goods, but are looking forward to partnering with local bakeries to sell, along with coffees, nitro cold-brew coffee, and a slew of different teas.
In addition to the local art the couple hopes to hang on the walls and sell for consignment, the Rosewood Café aims to host charitable events to benefit local causes, hopes to have live music, and traditional dinners on Sunday, when the café will only be open for several hours in the afternoon and evening.
Families, teens and kids will be able to enjoy board games and pinball, and even a token-launching game called Dinoscore, where brass tokens are shot into target slots for the chance to win tickets that they can put toward candy, prizes or refreshments.
“Instead of going hog-wild and ordering a ton of candy ... we’re ordering a half ton,” Spencer said.
“We want to have a really great variety of candies you remember,” Fallon said. “We’re going to be selling some toys, musical instruments ... just neat stuff.”
Sugar daddies and tootsie rolls will be alongside CBD items and local honey in their first-ever café business, but the couple are already scheming and dreaming of their second location: bringing back the arcade.
With Fallon’s background in restaurant, education and business management and Spencer’s varied jack-of-all-trades know-how and success in investments, the couple are confident that the Rosewood Café will soon be a sought-after location in Fair Haven and in Rutland County.
“We have the support of the community,” Spencer said. “We’ve talked to hundreds of people who are waiting for us to open.”