For Sandra Duckett, owner of Coffee Roasters of the Kennebunks, coffee has always played a big role in her life.
Her father, Mitchell Azar, owned & operated coffee shops in Boston and around the country. He sold the recipe for his special blend of three types of beans to Dunkin' Donuts, and it became the chain's original house blend. In 1985, Sandra's dad retired & she took over his shop on Massachusetts Avenue in Cambridge until the late 1990s.
When she closed that shop, she kept her dad's 160-year-old German roasting machine, and her husband built a small building and installed it in the yard of their home in Sudbury, Mass. She kept on roasting & eventually starting a mail-order coffee business while helping her husband run his funeral home. But being an energetic mother of nine grown children she soon found herself itching to get back into retail.
"My husband and I started looking for places to retire to and where I could have a little shop. We looked all over New England and even Costa Rica, but then we came to visit friends here during Christmas Prelude and fell in love with Kennebunk. The people here are just so friendly!," she says.
Bill Duckett, Sandra's husband, noticed an abandoned house at 163 Port Road in Kennebunk's Lower Village. The 215-year-old house, unoccupied for 35 years, had no central heat, electricity or running water, but they liked the location, and the attached barn would be perfect for the coffee shop. Seven years later & a major restoration of the property Coffee Roasters of the Kennebunks opened for business.