For anyone who has been following WestportMoms since we launched in January, 2017, you might remember that our very FIRST “Meet a Mom” feature was with Dana Noorily and Julie Mountain of The Granola Bar Westport! As regular customers, we have enjoyed every moment of The Granola Bar’s existence. I probably am there for coffee 1-2 times a day (as is my husband!), and as many know, It is a regular “workspace” for meetings, calls and working sessions! For years, The Granola Bar – and Dana and Julie – have welcomed us into the warm and special place they have created for our community – and we are exceptionally grateful!
While we also LOVE their new evening concept at The Granola Bar Rye (“The Bar”), and have only subtly begged them to open that here in Westport, we were even more thrilled to find out they will be taking over the space that was formerly Elvira’s at The Beach – and re-imagining It in a way that only the two of them could magically know how!
We are so excited about Old Mill Grocery (OMG), and went to visit Dana and Julie last week to learn a bit more, and wanted to share some highlights with all of you! THANK YOU DANA AND JULIE – we can’t wait!
M&M: How did this all come about? Tell us everything!
J&D: You may not believe It, but many years ago, I actually said to Dana “I want a granola bar for here one day” when passing Elvira’s. We always thought about it. That said, it would be wrong to put a Granola Bar here. It’s time for something fresh and different. Anyone could put avocado on toast. This is our community – and we want to do something bigger and better!
In reality, this may be the biggest thing we’ve ever done.
M&M: Okay, okay, but how did this become yours?
J&D: Truly just a few weeks ago Ian Warburg randomly reached out to us about a business opportunity. We hardly knew him before this, but a customer of ours from TGB has suggested her reach out. We are not landlords, but we know how to run a restaurant, and that was what they were looking for. In our initial conversation he said “I have heard it’s going to be very difficult to staff.” We very quickly told him we actually didn’t think It would be so bad (we’ve done this before!!), and we basically had the gig. Lucky for us – many of the people deciding who would take this special place over were our TGB customers!
M&M: How will OMG be different from TGB and who is running It with you?
J&D: Other than the coffee – It will be different in EVERY way! There will be smoothies and bowls and sandwiches and breakfast, but nothing will be what you find at TGB. The goal is not to cannibalize our own store, but instead to provide an elevated, beautiful experience, one which we want to enjoy as customers as well! We are very excited to have JJ – our head of food and beverage at TGB Rye – leading the charge on the kitchen side. He is an exceptional chef, and always coming up with the next thing!
*We can attest- we tried his Cacio e Pepe and Melissa was legitimately slurping It in the bowl…
M&M: When will It be open?
J&D: OMG will open on Monday, July 25th, and we will be open everyday from 7am-9pm. OMG will be open ALL YEAR ROUND with soups in the winter, delivery options available through Uber Eats and more!
M&M: What excites you the most about this new adventure?
J&D: This felt like an incredible opportunity to do something different in the kitchen of our dreams with a beautiful menu, pizza oven, and more! No one has yet done this the way we want to do It, and we can’t wait! We aim to make stores we want to go to. We’d have been disappointed if someone else had gotten to do It.
M&M: How do you two work together after all these years, and still like each other?
J&D: It’s like a marriage. We want the same things, and we are truly family. It’s been 10 years. Our spouses and kids are incredibly supportive, and it’s truly all they know since we’ve been doing this for so long. The kids now love seeing and learning about the business side, and we love being able to share this with them. My daughter wrote the kids menu (Julie), and they are really proud.
M&M: What are you most excited about?
J&D: Julie – The Vegan pizza | Dana – I am obsessed with owning a market. We are so excited to have different types of food (think pints of Ben & Jerry’s, Flour Water Salt homemade breads), house warming gifts (i.e., spectacular olive oils and pastas and flowers from Blossom + Stem), Charcuterie Boards available for pickup to bring to the beach, and many other beautiful things!
M&M: What can people do to support you?
J&D: Just enjoy it and have fun; we can’t wait for people to get to use the beach the way It was intended with everything at their fingertips
M&M: What has been most surprising since the announcement?
J&D: This has been a truly humbling experience; we thought people would be excited, but the reaction has been over the moon. People stop in to thank us daily. Older people who grew up here stop in with their children and families to tell us old stories; we can’t wait to keep the traditions alive.