While I thought the donuts would be the first thing I’d notice when I entered East Main & Main, it was instead the rustic industrial décor. The building has its own character. A wooden cafeteria style table is the center of the eating area, the round stools attached to the table legs so they can be tucked away. Local artwork is exhibited and for sale on the walls. The display of donuts is housed in what looks like a giant turquoise shipping container. There’s a lounge nestled down a small hall and oversized leather sofas, beckoning you to sit and stay a while. A perfect place to work “from home” or settle in with friends—and eat lots of donuts, because there’s no way (none) that you can possibly settle on just one of the nine standard seasonal options—and I don’t really mean standard; no, I mean extraordinary daily offerings like: Wildflower Honey Glaze, Salted Caramel, Lemon Blueberry, and Cookie Dough.
When Lisa Harris and Robert Strehle were conspiring on the creation of East Main & Main, they were hoping to bring a little bit of Brooklyn and a hint of the East End food movement to somewhere in the middle—which happens to be Port Jefferson Village. They wanted to be part of the local trend of the small batch movement and use the finest ingredients available. They also wanted to have fun.
They looked around for what was missing from their community and this brilliant pair were wise enough to realize this: Donuts! I mean, if you’re like me, you probably hadn’t realized how badly you missed glorious, gourmet donuts in your own life until you passed the window of this shop or peeked at their Instagram account. Now, I’m making excuses to pass through town so I can stop in and try another (and another).
Located next to Toast, East Main & Main is tucked away from the madness of Main Street. They don’t keep traditional hours, and instead open at 10:00 a.m. and close around 8:00 p.m., or when the donuts are all gone.
“We’re not a breakfast shop, we’re really a destination,” Harris says. That’s what keeps this endeavor fun for these two who sell over 750 donuts a day. When asked what inspires the unique flavors, I realize it’s like asking an artist what inspires their work—it’s a bit of everything. These two research food trends, listen to what their customers want (there’s even a giant roll of art paper where customers can leave comments and suggestions!), and of course their children, because family is a key component of this local shop’s existence.
Local community is also very important to Harris and Strehle and it’s obvious from the beverages to the marketplace wall; this shop is full of tasty, local, artisanal treasures, like organic honey, jams & preserves, coffee, granola and even soy candles. East Main & Main will begin hosting music and trivia nights starting this Fall, which is also when the seasonal menu changes.
“It’s so fun to watch people walk in,” Strehle says. “There’s two kinds of people; those that do the happy donut dance and those that look around at the décor and say ‘Wow, this is so cool!’” But believe me, once you get past the cool décor, you’ll quickly notice the donuts.
So, why donuts? “They’re just fun,” Harris points out. “You can do so much with them!” When you view the menu, it’s true. Harris and Strehle cleverly keep us all in suspense by announcing their daily specials on Instagram and Facebook each morning. Since they opened in June, Strehle estimates that they’ve probably had over 150 daily specials. Not only do we get hooked and baited but here’s the deal, most of these specials will never be back. That’s right. With three to four daily specials and a seasonally changing menu, that donut you just can’t stop telling your friends about may never make another appearance. It may, in fact, be a once in a lifetime experience—and why not? That’s what this fun shop is all about: A destination. An experience.
The early bird gets the daily specials—unless you call ahead and order your favorites. As soon as you wipe the drool off your chin, call East Main & Main to order and pay for your favorites. There’s no minimum, so if you’re dying for that Matcha or Cinnamon Bun donut but there’s no way you can get there until after you pick your kids up from summer camp in the late afternoon, no worries! Call ahead, pay, and know you will be a happy camper too! Harris excitedly points out that East Main & Main even creates custom donut towers with your choice of colors and flavors for weddings, showers, and parties. (Please, please invite me to your affair if you order one of these.) If you’re having a smaller occasion or maybe you’re just an awesome boss and want to treat your staff, call in an advance to order up a dozen.