Ada’s Kitchen + Coffee (The Old Ada’s Variety Store) Opens in Riverside, Greenwich

Jessica Ryan

Occupying the old Riverside post office, Ada’s Variety Store was a local favorite. For many generations Ada was lovingly referred to as the old lady who sold penny candy to neighborhood kids; she was a pillar of the community. She has since passed away, but her legacy lives on. Her family remains involved with the little store’s brand new future, keeping her memory alive for many more generations to come.

The shop, now called Ada’s Kitchen + Coffee, is located near the Riverside train station and has been newly renovated by Ada’s nieces and nephews. With the help of friend and local interior designer, Katie Watson, the new Ada’s Kitchen + Coffee has been transformed into a bright, inviting space, melding the old with the new.

Perhaps more importantly than the great coffee (I had to give it a test drive) is the tribute that is paid to Ada on a daily basis. Photographs of her decorate the walls, and a special candy corner was created in her honor.

Ada’s Kitchen + Coffee will offer artisanal coffee and locally sourced scratch-made foods. Chef and Greenwich native, Mike Pietrafeso who trained at the French Culinary Institute spent the last decade in the high-end restaurant and catering business.  His passion for fresh ingredients and homemade food are unwavering and has been a focus throughout his career. Pietrafeso worked under Bill Taibe at both Napa & Co. and Le Farm and told me that “Bill has been the strongest influence in my culinary style and instruction.”

Ada’s Kitchen + Coffee offers items that are locally sourced, organic where possible, and a seasonal menu that is paired with a variety of locally roasted artisan coffee from Path Coffee Roasters in Port Chester, NY.

“Featuring local and fresh ingredients is what I do best.  We’re pulling our own mozzarella, curing all the meats and even making the ice cream that will go into the ice cream sandwiches.”  

The current menu includes two dozen breakfast, sandwich and salad options in addition to scratch-made treats including the English Muffins and breakfast biscuits. The ice cream, I can safely tell you, is phenomenal, and even better when sandwiched in between two large chocolate chip cookies to create a wonderfully decadent treat worth every calorie.

I stopped by the shop last Friday to meet Mike and his wife Krista. During my brief visit quite a few customers came up and knocked on the front door only to learn that they would have to wait just a few more days. There was a definite sense of excitement in the air.  While the locals have eagerly been anticipating Ada’s opening no one has been as eager Mike.

Before I left I picked up a Kale + Quinoa bowl for the road. Made from grilled chicken, roasted winter squash, shaved brussels, caramelized onions, parmesan and red cabbage; it was delightful. I am eager to return to try some of the other wonderful looking items.

Ada’s Kitchen + Coffee

112 Riverside Ave, Greenwich CT