MIDDLETOWN – Booskerdoo Coffee & Baking Co. has opened its new cafe on Route 35 in what is emerging as a row of food-focused new stores in front of ShopRite.
It is the cafe company’s first franchise location and features its own coffee roaster as well as bakery items fresh baked on premises.
“People can see the roaster working and they can smell it throughout the parking lot,” said franchisee Jeff Sarver of Aberdeen, a restaurant industry veteran. “It sparks their interest. It’s like ‘Oh my God, it’s actually roasted on site and not somewhere where no one knows it.'”
Booskerdoo’s new location in Middletown is part of a building that was once Sears Auto Center. Another tenant, Nicholas Creamery, expects to open around the end of May.
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“I love it,” said James Caverly, co-founder and CEO. “It turned out great.”
Booskerdoo, which was founded by husband-and-wife team James and Amelia Caverly in 2011, also has other local stores in Asbury Park, Fair Haven, Holmdel, Monmouth Beach and Red Bank.
The auto center, along with a closed Sears store on the other side of the parking lot, was purchased from Seritage Growth Properties by Richard Saker, president and chief executive officer of Saker ShopRites. Saker renovated and remodeled the Sears store, which had closed in 2018, and opened a new 91,624-square-foot ShopRite supermarket in 2021, along with a ShopRite Wine and Spirits store next door.
Saker also remodeled and subdivided the Sears Auto Center, swapping out maintenance bays for storefronts with the goal of creating a place for restaurants. The new shopping center, at the intersection of Route 35 and Kings Highway, was named Kings Commons.
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David P. Willis, an award-winning business writer, has covered business and consumer news at the Asbury Park Press for nearly 25 years. He writes APP.com’s What’s Going There column and can be reached at [email protected]. Join his What’s Going There page on Facebook for updates.