The latest Wellesley, Mass., business news:
Plans for Jejes Coffeehouse still percolating
After receiving the Select Board’s approval for a common victualler license in early 2022, Jejes Coffeehouse had planned to open at 259 Washington St., in Wellesley Hills by fall 2022. They’re still all in on Wellesley, however, their opening has been delayed. The business told its Facebook followers in a post: “This year we met so many wonderful coffee lovers who have been supporting us. At the same time, we also met a terrible general contractor who delayed and fudged the construction of our brick-and-mortar shop for an entire year.”
In email to The Swellesley Report, JeJes’ owner Duse Lee told us the business is working with a new general contractor and architect, and expects to open the 7-seat coffeehouse early to mid-February.
Despite the challenges in opening here, the business has experienced some high points over the past year. Jejes’ head roaster, Sunny (Soonhee Ka), competed in the US Roaster Preliminary Competition in Indianapolis, Indiana and ranked in the top 3 to advance to the US Roaster Qualifying Competition. She will compete with 23 other competitors in Baltimore, Maryland, at the end of January in a bid to advance to the final round in Portland, Oregon, in April.
Select Board might nix its formal liaison to businesses
The Wellesley Select Board is reviewing its liaison assignments for members, and Chair Lise Olney has recommended doing away with the body having a formal liaison to the business community. That responsibility would be handled by Assistant Executive Director Amy Frigulietti, a town employee whose job includes economic development efforts, and has entailed getting key grants and helping the town make changes to business regulations.
“It’s clear that having a board member in this role has been useful historically and filled a real gap in our relationship with the business community over time,” Olney said, expressing thanks to current liaison Beth Sullivan Woods as well as her predecessors. “I just want to clarify that the change I’m suggesting really reflects an evolution in how we’ve handled the town’s relationship with our businesses.”
Making the change would help Wellesley better track and coordinate business concerns as they relate to multiple town services, Olney said. None of this would preclude any board member from maintaining contact with the business community, she added.
Wellesley Executive Director Meghan Jop spoke supportively of the change, as did board members Colette Aufranc and Tom Ulfelder.
Some members of that business community appealed via letters to the Select Board to keep the liaison position intact.
Sullivan Woods said during the discussion at the board meeting that she was “quite taken aback” when Olney told her about plans to eliminate the liaison role, arguing that there are distinct roles played by the liaison and town staff. “I think as a combination of staff and board support we have furthered their [businesses’] success and furthered the community’s success,” she said. “I worry about sending the signal that we are cutting support to the business community at just the juncture where they are coming back to life…”
You can view the sometimes tense discussion on the topic at about the 2-hour, 46-minute mark of Wellesley Media’s recording of the Jan. 10 meeting. Olney indicated the discussion might be worth continuing to a future meeting, when there could be a vote.
YogaSix opens in Linden Square
Congrats to YogaSix for opening its studio in Linden Square (200D Linden St., near CVS).
The business, which boasts of offering a “sensory yoga experience,” offers 6 core classes, including hot, power and slow flow.
Lots of deals are available for new members.
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A sight for sore eyes
Eyespot at 63 Central St. in Wellesley Square has decided it’s already time to spruce the place up, even though they just came to town in 2021, and the place certainly didn’t look shabby. What do we know about these things? Our swell office has looked the same for years.
A sign on the door of the luxury eyewear business says they’re closed through January for renovations. If you have emergency bespoke optical needs, you can visit their Chestnut Hill location.
Alta Strada wants to look prettier, too
Alta Strada in Wellesley Square will soon serve up its delicious Italian classics in a renovated interior. The restaurant’s website says it plans to reopen on Tuesday, Jan. 17 at 5pm after kitchen and dining room upgrades are made.