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Photos by Angela Matua/QNS
Photos by Angela Matua/QNS
COFFEED recently opened a bar and lounge at its flagship location in Long Island City.

Though COFFEED is best known for its locally roasted coffee and philanthropic bent, the chain is branching out to offer its customers a variety of unique cocktails and local brews.

Its flagship location at 37-18 Northern Blvd. in Long Island City, which opened in 2012, is now home to the COFFEED Bar and Lounge. In addition to serving its fair trade coffee and baked goods, the site stays open later to offer its distinctive cocktails.

The bar is located in a larger building that houses a variety of businesses, from Standard Motor Products to Kodak and Chinese Theatre Works. According to the bar manager, Alfonso Biondi Jr., COFFEED hosted a soft opening on Nov. 3 to welcome the many people who work in the building’s businesses.

“It’s a very tight knit community over here. It’s comforting,” Biondi said. “I already feel like in the short time I’ve been here I [have gotten] to know a lot of the faces and the usuals and what their usual drinks are.”

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Biondi, who grew up in Flushing and helped to run COFFEED’s location at Jones Beach, said the owner Frank “Turtle” Raffaele got a liquor license for the establishment last summer and enlisted Biondi to run the bar. 

Customers will find “a lot of twists to traditional cocktails” and local beers and spirits. Favorites include the Long Island City Iced Tea, which consists of vodka, gin, tequila, rum, triple sec, ginger ale and cranberry juice; the Blue Angel with Brooklyn gin, triple sec, blue curacao and orange garnish; and the Limoncello with Stoli vodka, limoncello, lime juice and basil. 

Biondi is also planning to stock up on beer offerings from the abundance of Queens breweries in the area. In addition to the drinks, the bar also serves shareable bites. Customers can choose from spinach artichoke dip, caprese salad or the Italian butcher block, which includes soppressata, salami, prosciutto, olives and mozzarella. Warm dishes like personal pizzas will also be introduced. 

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The space will also welcome local musicians and jazz bands for performances and management is planning themed nights, free beer and liquor tastings and more.

The reception from building patrons and the local community has been great so far, Biondi said, and he’s looking forward to catering to more people in the Queens community.

“I love the Queens area,” he said. “Especially being born and raised in Queens, it really sort of has the feel of what the Williamsburg, Park Slope area is going through and I see a lot of that here in Long Island City. The diversity is magnificent. The plethora of cuisine and nationalities is great.”

For now, the bar is open on Wednesdays and Thursdays from 4 to 11 p.m., Fridays from 4 p.m. to midnight and Saturdays from 2 p.m. to midnight with plans to expand hours in the near future.

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