David Higgins and his daughter, Callie, behind the counter at the new Black Fly Coffee on West Street in Bar Harbor. ISLANDER PHOTO BY LIZ GRAVES

New coffee shop fills a need



BAR HARBOR — Even though he commutes from Brewer every day, David Higgins is a familiar face on West Street. Working as a bartender last year at West Street Café, he said, he’d look out across the street and notice that there are no coffee shops on the block. 

“All the customers are coming to me,” at the café, he said, asking, “Do you have coffee? Do you have iced coffee? Do you have cappuccino?” 

So when a small storefront next to Art on West, most recently home to The Naked Blueberry, opened up, he jumped on it for a coffee shop. 

Black Fly Coffee opened for business in late August, serving Carrabassett Coffee Co. roasts from the company based near Sugarloaf. On offer this week were their Sunrise blend, Bad Dog blend and a popular blueberry coffee. There are doughnuts from Gosselin’s Bakery in Bangor and a variety of grab-and-go snacks and treats. 

It’s an all-family crew: David Higgins, his wife Caty, 4th-grade daughter Callie and 6-year-old son Cameron. 

Callie, a capable barista and hand at the register, was impressing lots of customers in the shop’s first few days open. She’s headed back to school but will keep helping at the shop on the weekends, according to her dad. 

Before coming to work in Bar Harbor at West Street Café, David and Caty worked at the Lucerne Inn for many years. They settled on the name Black Fly, David said, because it’s catchy and evokes Maine, but isn’t overused. 

“We want to not take ourselves too seriously,” he said. 

The shop will stay open as long as the nearby hotels do in the fall, Higgins said, and plans to be back next summer. Once it’s possible to add some indoor seating, they hope to host local art and music. 

Liz Graves

Liz Graves

Reporter at Mount Desert Islander
Former Islander reporter and editor Liz Graves grew up in California and came to Maine as a schooner sailor.

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