There Used to be a Cafe There

This morning I drove down into the flats of Holyoke. There I found City Paper, where it felt like I was being transported back in time. Wooden floors, sad and tired party decorations, an older black women behind the counter, no customers in sight. I was there to find plastic cups for ice coffee…and I chatted with the lady behind the counter about the neighborhood. “There used to be a coffee house right near here,” I said. “They closed…they were right over there,” she replied, pointing to a boarded up building. I looked closer and saw that it was actually the one right next door, this was the cafe started by Dean Cycon, of Dean’s Beans. “The grant ran out,” said the saleslady. “They used to have lattes and coffees and stuff. Good coffee. But everybody goes to Dunkin’ Donuts, they’re right up the street.

It was sad to see another business buffeted and defeated by the mighty Dunk. I have seen the TV ads for their new “turbo” coffee, a regular joe with a shot of espresso. I’ve even named our own version, we call it the SuperNomad. But everybody does go to Dunk, and that’s why it’s tough for smaller guys like us to get the business. To everyone who does venture all the way into downtown S. Deerfield, thank you for passing by your familiar Dunk to come to the GoNOMAD CAFE!