DANBURY, Conn. -- Megan Denaut is the first to admit that if her mom hadn't passed away three years ago, she may not be where she is today: Co-Owner of Reverie Caffe in Patterson.
The homey spot, which she runs with her sister, Danbury resident Francesca Denaut, came from a soul-searching cross country road trip soon after her mom's passing in 2013. The long drive included numerous visits to local cafes, coffeehouses and bars.
When she returned to Putnam, Denaut, who previously worked in radio marketing, decided she wanted to do something to both remember her mother and to also conquer a dream of owning a B&B.
Indeed, her community-minded eatery has family is at its heart (her longtime friend, Bruce Petty, works as chef) and the two siblings work side by side. Reverie Caffe recently celebrated its one year anniversary and appears to be going strong. In a short time the area spot has become known for its fresh food cooked to order.
"We cater to all different dietary needs," said Denaut. "Vegan. Vegetarian. Gluten free. Daily free. Soy free.
"Any of our dishes can be make for you because it's all made to order. Nothing is waiting to be consumed." Among the most popular dishes: Mashed chickpeas and warmed pita chips made daily.
Similarly, the cafe is all about local. Local coffee from Bear Mountain Roasters in Mahopac, local craft beer from Newburgh Brewery and Keegan Ale's in Kingston, among others, and local music every Saturday.
"We want to be your coffeehouse during the day and your evening entertainment spot, at night" she said.
Also gaining strength --- Denaut said many residents still don't realize they're open at night -- their live music every Saturday from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. The kitchen is open, craft beer and wine are at the ready, and it's more like dinner and a show, she said. There's never a cover. And local artists are always part of the program.
In the new year the cafe will be adding music on Friday nights in addition to trivia nights and open mics. A paint and sip holiday event is planned for Wednesday, Dec. 7. (Check their Facebook page for details.)
Denaut, who lives in Carmel, said they are also hoping to extend their hours to seven days a week and add in delivery for local businesses and schools.
Community is at the heart of all she does. "This town has really become a home to me," she said. "The people are great and so close knit. We know each other's names, we get to know their families... they make every day an exciting one and a reason why it never feels like work to us."
Reverie Caffe is at 21 Front St., (845) 286-5136, www.reveriecaffe.com/ .