Keith and Nancy Kouris in their Riverhead bakery in 2012. Flie photo: Peter Blasl

Blue Duck Bakery Cafe is closing its Riverhead location on Monday.

Owners Nancy and Keith Kouris announced the closing in a press release this morning.

“It is with great sadness that we must close our Riverhead location after seven years. We had great hope that we could be part of Riverhead’s revival.” Nancy Kouris said in the release.

“The obstacles became too great for us to continue,” she said.

The past year had become even more challenging as construction of Riverhead Lofts disrupted the area, finding sustainable help became more difficult, and local opinion on parking and safety drew many people away from downtown, the company said in a press release.

The Blue Duck Bakery was home to Poetry Street, a local collaboration of poets and artists of the spoken word. Poetry Street will celebrate their 5th Anniversary on Sunday at 2 p.m. at the Riverhead bakery.

Any previous cake orders will be honored and can be picked up at the Riverhead location, according to the release.

The Kourises expressed thanks to their loyal customers and supporters. They said they are optimistic that other businesses in downtown will flourish and grow with future revitalization.

The bakery owners said they will focus on their wholesale business and maintain the remaining two locations in Southold and Greenport. Their artisan breads and baked products can be found at local restaurants, grocers and Farmers Markets.

The Blue Duck Bakery Café opened on Columbus Day weekend in 1999 in Southampton. The Kourises were one of the first to introduce European style artisan breads to the East End. It was “a tough sell at first but eventually the crusty, chewy, preservative free bread caught on,” they said. A new wholesale business emerged and in 2008, after growing out of the Southampton location, they moved the bread production to Southold where it is made today.

They opened their Riverhead location in 2012.

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Denise Civiletti
Denise is a veteran local reporter, editor, attorney and former Riverhead Town councilwoman. Her work has been recognized with numerous awards, including investigative reporting and writer of the year awards from the N.Y. Press Association. She is a founder, owner and co-publisher of this website.Email Denise.