Joan d'Amico in her store
More problems for Joan and Frank D'Amico, Jr., and their wonderful old-fashioned Carroll Gardens coffee and specialty food store at 309 Court Street. You may remember that in early February, Joan taped a note on the store's window addressing the person(s) who made an anonymous complaint to 311 about the smell of roasting coffee, which wafts from the store when the coffee roaster is in use.
Joan's note reminded neighbors that, since 1948, three generations of d'Amicos had operated the coffee business at this same location."We understand that not all people like the smell of roasting coffee." Joan wrote in that first note. "This is our business. If you have concerns with our roasting schedule, please, we invite you to come and talk to us. We hope we can work together to solve this issue."
The 311 had prompted a visit from an New York City's Department of Environmental Protection inspector, who told the d'Amicos that they may need a costly after-burner to reduce the smell.
Joan and Frank are currently taking steps to address the problem, but they need some time to figure out how to best deal with the situation.
However, the anonymous caller continues to lodge complaints with DEP. In addition, the complainer has started to call the NYC Fire Department. Last Thursday, fireman from the Red Hook Fire House rushed to D'Amico's with sirens blaring. Someone had called in a false alarm, claiming that there was smoke coming out of the store.
Now Joan has taped a second letter on the window. It reads:
Ok. You can stop calling DEP and the Fire Department. We got your message. Even though this will end up costing us thousands of dollars, you have given us no choice. We have looked into the necessary requirements and are in the process of correcting the problem. It will just take a little bit of time. So please, stop the calls!!!! The fire department may miss a REAL call while coming here for a "false alarm." If you see smoke coming out of our chimney-call us. 718 875 5403.A visit to talk to us would have been the neighborly way to go, but unfortunately, that never happened.I hope that you are as concerned about everything that takes place in OUR community!Incredible, isn't it? The smell of d'Amico's roasting coffee is as integral to the neighborhood as the aroma of freshly baked bread and frying garlic. It is difficult to understand that the aroma is driving someone to such extremes.
The anonymous caller may be interested to know that d'Amico's supplies the Red Hook firehouse. "The firemen drink our coffee." Joan told me with a smile.