Left to right: Amani Hosein, legislative aide for Jonathan Kornreich; Brookhaven Town
Council Member Jonathan Kornreich; Samantha Sherman, owner of The Hampton Grocer;
Emily Murphy, legislative aide for Suffolk County Legislator Sarah Anker; and Michael
Iasilli, legislative aide for Suffolk County Legislator Bridget Fleming.
Ever wonder what is going on behind the doors of Stony Brook’s Calverton Food Business
Incubator? Ever thought about starting a cooking business? Ever want to see what
foodies really love doing? All of this was on display the afternoon of Wednesday,
June 1 , when the incubator opened its doors to community members, investors, representatives,
and market buyers.
Thirty-six start-up food companies showcased their workspace and provided amazing
samples of their products to over 80 attendees. Many community members who came to
the two-hour open house admitted to driving by the facility hundreds of times, but
never knew what was cooking inside. One attendee said she thought it was a Stony
Brook University Animal Research facility, much like what Plum Island was. The woman
was thrilled to see it was a food business incubator, and excited to share this information
with friends who never knew such a facility existed.
The open house was the brainchild of Brookhaven Town Councilmember Jonathan Kornreich,
who had visited the incubator and recognized the potential of these young start-ups
with the hope to eventually have them locate their companies and produce jobs within
“Calverton’s Food Business Incubator provides a supported environment for food entrepreneurs
to launch and grow their businesses. I toured it several months ago and was so inspired
by the hard work and passion of the entrepreneurs, I wanted to find a way to help
support them as they pursue their dreams,” Kornreich said. “We put together a match-making
event and invited business and civic leaders from all over Suffolk County; investors;
restaurant owners and others to come meet the entrepreneurs, sample their products,
offer advice and maybe strike some deals.”
Mike Bauer, owner Bauer’s Brew, at the incubator open house.
While sampling the company’s delicious products, attendees also provided great input
and support to the companies. “We hope to do this again next year so watch for the
announcement in the future!” added Kornreich.
The companies in attendance heated up bitesize quiche, warmed cheesy puffs, created
samplings of home made potato salad, rice pudding, biscotti, cookies, doughnuts, and
candy. There were marinating sauces to sample, coffee, tea, crumb cake, granola,
jams, breads, keto muffins, and fresh juices to try. There were even Gluten Free Fries
to be had. The food incubator has private baking rooms, a large shared-use commercial
kitchen and one of only two totally gluten-free commercial kitchens on Long Island.
“We are thrilled with the success of the Open House and are excited to be involved
in more events like this. Our mission is to help our companies succeed and grow, not
just on the East End but across Long Island and beyond,” said David Hamilton, Calverton’s
program manager. “We have a lot of special companies and products being made here,
and it is our responsibility to get them in front of as many possible customers as
“I am continually amazed at the great food or drink creations produced in this building.
Calverton is a place where we nurture companies helping them to grow,” said Yvonne
Schultz, Calverton’s building manager and former entrepreneur. Along with Kornreich,
Schultz organized the event, doing everything from arranging table space to communicating
with participating companies to greeting attendees at the front door.
And at the end of the day, all went away with a good understanding of food incubation,
seeing the love and care that goes into each product — and a full belly.
“Calverton is the place where people get the opportunity to follow their dreams and
passions in the food and beverage industry,” concluded Schultz.
To learn more about the Calverton Food Business Incubator, please visit its website.