Have you felt a slight northeasterly breeze as you've strolled down Park Avenue lately? If you did that's not just in part to the magnificent weather we've been experiencing, but also thanks to two ladies who have brought a touch of NYC to Winter Park. The New General officially opened today at 155 New England Avenue and it's a beautiful (and more affordable) breath of fresh air. Business partners Tracy Liffey and Christine Mitchell (who I'm excited to say are Northeastern babies like myself) combined their business acumen in both hospitality and corporate retail to bring us a sleek hybrid labeled as the New General; their take on a modern general store with retail, a cafe of freshly made food, and a coffee bar. Starting early at 7 AM you can walk up to their coffee window and grab a drink until 9 AM when the full shop opens. They are trying to leverage the local community where they can, so the coffee brewed is by Lineage, with the mocha provided by Peterbrooke Chocolate, and they even have some oh-so-popular Buttermilk Bakery goods on hand. When the full shop opens you can enjoy seating inside (or outside) and order from their breakfast menu which includes items prepared by their in-house chef like organic cashew yogurt, cauliflower hash, and seasonal toasts. For lunch they offer take away soups, salads, and sandwiches. The menu will continue to change as seasonality permits, and they will be sourcing fruits, vegetables and spices from the Winter Park Farmer's Market and getting seafood from Lombardi's.
"We are trying really hard to do all of our own stuff in house and leverage what we have here in the local community. We want to support local brands," explained Tracy. The shelves are filled with makers from all over the globe but they all fall in line with the motto that both Tracy and Christine want to stay true to.
"Our motto is quality over quantity. You can buy a few of the things that you really love and you buy it for quality and longevity. Less is more is what we are trying to stand for," explained Tracy.You'll find international brands like Kinto from Japan, and those from within the states like Canvas from NYC for sustainable home decor, Will Full Goods out of Minneapolis, and domestic and international magazines like Kinfolk and Darling.Apparel for men, women and kids sit cleanly on the shelves available from merchants like The Bee and the Fox. New General covers the spectrum from home decor, apothecary, cleaning supplies, apparel, and beauty products with an impressive line of makers that all have an artisanal non-factory approach to their products. Don't be worried that with an address that is Park Avenue adjacent you'll only be visiting for a cup of coffee.
"We are trying to have a breadth of assortment from lower cost items like an all-natural nail polish or a notebook while high end items are mixed in but are all good quality," explained Tracy.
The shop is open from 9 AM - 4 PM while the coffee window is open from 7 AM - 4 PM. They are closed on Mondays. Make sure to follow their Instagram @newgeneralstore.