East End Business Notebook: New Chef at Jedediah Hawkins Inn

Also this week, a couple takes over a local favorite in Westhampton Beach, and a new shop opens in Amagansett for the holidays.


Main Street Sweets Owner Retires; Local Couple to Take Over

After 19 years of serving up treats to the Westhampton Beach community Kenny Schnabel, owner of Main Street Sweets has decided to retire, but he said he is leaving the store in good hands — to locals, Shawn and Toni Humdinger.



Amidst Internet chatter suggesting Keith Luce, executive chef and owner at the Jedediah Hawkins Inn/Luce and Hawkins Restaurantin South Jamesport has taken his leave, Alex Algieri, a chef formerly of the North Fork Oyster Company in Greenport, will be taking over the kitchen.

The new chef's father, Al Algieri, an East Quogue resident and member of the East Quogue Civic Association, confirmed that his son had indeed begun working as a chef at Jedediah Hawkins. Comments have sprung up online since Edible East End published a report Monday saying Luce had cut ties with the popular establishment.

Both Luce and the inn's owner Lia Polites declined multiple requests to confirm that report.


Local Artists Promote Paintings ‘On Cloud 9’ at Clovis Point Vineyard

When she helped form a support group for local artists about five years ago, Cutchogue resident Ann McCaughey had trouble coming up with a name.

But she settled on a reflection of how painting plein air, or outdoors, made her feel — on Cloud 9.

“My husband didn’t quite like the name — he thought it sounded too much like a massage parlor,” she said. “But when you go out plein air painting, there is a kind of a moment that is just sort of like ecstasy, the Cloud 9 effect.”


Christmas Tree Store Opens in Amagansett

With the holiday season upon us, there's a new Christmas shop to fill all your holiday décor desires.

C. Whitmore Gardens in Amagansett opened its new 2012 Christmas Shop this past weekend with everything from Fraser fir Christmas trees to ornaments to "deck the halls."

The store is stocked up on a wide assortment of wreaths and garlands, from the West Coast and balsam wreaths and white pine garland from North Carolina. It also carries poinsettias, from 2-inch to 14-inch clay pots, depending on where they will be placed.


Local Business Says Its Ice Melter 'Beets' the Rest

With a harsh winter predicted for the Northeast, municipalities and homeowners will soon begin stocking up on road salt to keep streets and driveways passable and safe, and to that end, a upstart company is marketing a new product that they say is more effective at melting ice while also being environmentally friendly.

East End Organics, based in Riverhead and started by a Bridgehampton businessman, is selling ice melter products that use all-natural beet juice in place of chloride accelerants such as magnesium, calcium or potassium, which salesman Victor Balchunas said are corrosives and harsh on the environment. Meanwhile, before being mixed with salt, beet juice is 60 percent less corrosive than distilled water, he said. "It takes the harshness of the salt an it neutralizes it."

The natural ice melter is better for asphalt and sidewalks, and safer for pets, Balchunas said.


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