I just got off the phone with Kozy Kitchen owner Jason Gordon, who signed his lease on a new spot a few minutes ago. The health-conscious, family-owned spot is moving from its McKinney Avenue location to Lakewood, settling down in the space that Sugarbacon Proper Kitchen vacated last July.
Kozy Kitchen was one of the earliest go-tos to for gluten-free pancakes and baked goods, for breakfast omelets packed with grass-fed buffalo or venison sausage and raw cheddar or egg whites and “all the veggies you can handle.” For 15 years, the welcoming spot has focused on sustainability and nutrition, peddling local brand Holy Kombucha on tap and fresh juices in any combination for swirls of orange, green apple, carrot, grapefruit.
Growing and creating community has always been part of the explicit goal as well. But on McKinney, that was problematic. “Parking became a huge issue,” says Gordon. “Our growth was stagnating because of the lack of parking. There’s valet…” but Kozy Kitchen isn’t the kind of place that attracts a valet-ing crowd.
“We were eyeing a spot in Bishop Arts,” says Gordon about a space across the street from where a new Central Market is projected to open. But a new owner of their current building also happened to own the Lakewood property. He told Gordon he had “the perfect place” for him.
His goals for the new spot include catering to that Lakewood community with a kid’s menu. “We definitely get kids at Kozy, but not as many as we’ll get in Lakewood,” Gordon says, anticipating a gluten-free, healthy “full, blown-out” kid’s menu on which the culinary team (headed by executive chef Nick Pavageau) is currently working.
The McKinney Avenue spot has been a welcoming place to read the newspaper on a lazy Saturday morning. The new location will run the same hours, from early morning until 9 p.m. or even later. One of the other changes is the addition of a bar, where people can linger over a local brew.
Gordon refers to the tenant before Sugarbacon Proper Kitchen with a chuckle: “Dixie House had a 35-year run. I think we can do 35 years, too.” How do you like that, Lakewood?