This Friday, the doors of Mary Ann's Gourmet Market will open in the Ramapo Centre shopping complex on MacArthur Boulevard.
Owner Michael Flynn, a chef for the past 22 years, was inspired to open a gourmet market while shopping at Mahwah Bagels and Gourmet, which is where the new market is now located. After hearing that the old bagel store was for sale, he and his wife Maria, both Mahwah residents, decided to jump at the opportunity to provide Mahwah with a market that it was missing.
"Mary Ann's Gourmet Market is a mix of a coffee shop, a deli, a bakery and a grocery store," Maria Flynn said.
Even though the market is not officially open yet, the atmosphere is warm and Maria and Michael are inviting and eager to talk about their budding business.
Mary Ann's Gourmet Market, which was named after the couple's 11-year-old daughter, will be open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and will offer hot, homemade specials daily. Maria Flynn's favorite item on the menu is the banana foster waffle taco, which is essentially a banana foster inside of a folded waffle.
"This market sounds like it would have cool foods that I would like to try," said freshman Marcos Ulloa. "I will probably order from there next semester one day."
The grocery portion of the store will offer products such as fresh, locally grown organic produce and dairy products such as yogurt. One of Maria Flynn's main goals when putting together Mary Ann's Gourmet Market was to give back to the community by helping small local businesses. The market will do this by purchasing organic and local ingredients whenever possible.
The bakery section of the store is a unique addition to the Mahwah community because there is no other bakery in town. Residents can grab a bakery item and a coffee on the go or sit and chat in the comfortable chairs and couches.
When designing the coffee shop nook, Maria Flynn had Ramapo College students in mind. The entire market has free WiFi, which Maria Flynn envisions Ramapo students taking advantage of while they are studying together around the tables, drinking coffee and grabbing a bite to eat.
"We have created a space that will be welcoming for Ramapo students, whether it is for meals, food to go or studying," Maria Flynn said.
Ramapo students will be able to order food for delivery to campus and may even want to order the special Roadrunner Sandwich Maria Flynn named after Ramapo's students. The sandwich contains Applewood smoked bacon, lettuce, tomato, avocado and herbed mayonnaise on a pretzel roll.
Students will even be able to get this sandwich (and more) at a discount. When told about the Roadrunner Advantage Program, which offers students discounts at various businesses off campus when they present their Ramapo IDs, Maria Flynn enthusiastically said that Mary Ann's Gourmet Market would be interested in participating in the program next year.
"I would definitely go to the new market because it sounds delicious, and also because they would be offering students a discount," junior Ally Kershner said. "College students are always looking for ways to save money."
The market is also looking to hire, so any students interested in employment should visit the store for a job application.