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Danish Cafe Feeling Post-Sandy Slump

The Red Bank start-up eatery was a haven for electricity starved residents in the days after the hurricane. Were you one of those plugged in at Danish?

This time last month Red Bank's Danish Cafe was hoppin'.

Every chair filled and every outlet occupied by a tangle of wires leading to surge protectors and chargers fueling the electric devices of those left in the dark by superstorm Sandy. Many Rumson and Fair Haven residents were part of that comfort and power-seeking pack.

With cheerful smiles the Danes welcomed the storm weary with free coffee and their signature homemade flaky treats to their shop in the The Galleria.

You'd think with such a packed house then those visitors would be back this month ordering up lattes and danishes.

"Actually, it's been really slow," said Claudi Kofod, who owns the shop along with his wife Lone (pronounced Lo-na). "We were on our way up before Sandy. I think people are at home looking after their houses and dealing with insurance companies."

The hit comes at a critical time for this fledgling business. The Kofods feel the clock ticking on their business visa that gives them just 24 months to prove they have a profitable outfit. More than six months have already come and gone.

The recent slow down will give the pair something to think about on their upcoming vacation back to their native Denmark. The cafe will be closed for the holidays starting on Dec. 20.

Claudi said he and Lone will use the time to re-evaluate the business' direction and will consider adding more catering services and selling their own coffee by the pound, two things they have had great customer feedback on.

Danish Cafe will reopen on Jan. 12 with free coffee, Claudi says, "to say Happy New Year" to their customers.

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