I was able to get a sneak peek into the new Kith & Co coffee shop located at 3446 NE 12th Ave, Oakland Park. Situated at the former site of the community’s beloved Swtichbox Coffee, the place is now home to Kith & Co. I met with two of the three owners: Joel Carpenter and Monique Huntington-Keitz. Mikaela Schipani, the third owner, was not present at the time.
The inside décor has a 1920’s feel with modern touches. Velvet upholstered seating and floral murals give a warm and comforting atmosphere. Art deco medallions adorn the bar and modern warm lighting sets a cozy vibe. There is plenty of seating as well as outlets available for those who intend to take some time to work and sip in the future.
Kith & Co opened its door on April 25th and they’re offering coffee, tea, and breakfast fare. During the COVID-19 crisis, they also wanted to make fresh fruit and vegetable market packages available to the community as well as toilet paper. For now, they will be take-out only and delivery will commence shortly with Uber Eats. Select cocktails will also be available for take-out.
Once social distancing practices lift, they intend on holding live music inside with a small indoor corner stage and they plan on taking advantage of the outdoor seating for entertainment as well.
The full menu will include beer, wine, and cocktails in the evening hours. As well as tapas. They intend on having fresh flower bouquets available on the weekends.
When asked why they chose Oakland Park, Joel Carpenter replied, “The area is up and coming and in close proximity to Wilton Manors. We wanted to be of service to the LGBTQ community as well and this area is in the midst of an evolution, we want to be a part of that.”
Monique Huntigong-Keitz, added: “It has been such a pleasure opening in the community. We’ve already had a chance to meet many residents… it’s been amazing and exciting. We know that community misses Switchbox and we are ready to step up and fill that need.”
Last weekend, Kith & Co offered free flowers to the community as a gesture of gratitude and for their patience as they redecorated the café during these strange times. Not only is community important to them but they make sure to serve ethically sourced coffee. Counter Culture Coffee, from North Carolina, ethically sources their coffee and provides stable work to the workers who harvest it. They also offer barista training which their baristas partake in. Counter Culture Coffee will be available for purchase to brew at home.
The trio has been friends and worked together in the past. “We work really well together and each one of us has a specialty. We want Kith & Co to be a place where everyone is welcome. We want to build relationships in the community”, said Joel. When asked if they had a message for residents, Joel replied, “You’re welcome here.”
Kith & Co is open 9:00 am – 4:00 pm. To pre-order for curbside delivery, visit their website http://www.kithco.coffee
Rhiannon Samoyedny was born and raised in South Florida. She has lived in Oakland Park for over 25 years and purchased her home in Garden Acres in 2012 where she resides with her husband, two teenaged boys, a few rescue cats, and her dog.
Her professional career began as a project manager and estimator for a small Oakland Park construction company and she later went on to earn her degree in Court Reporting, where she later incorporated her own small business RS Reporting, Inc.
She has a passion for gardening and attends many horticulture classes and workshops. She is also an LGA (Local Government Academy) graduate, class of 2019, and an active community volunteer and activist. You can usually find her around town at various Oakland Park meetings and events with her notebook, so be sure to say hello.