FANWOOD, NJ -- The mystery is over.
The former Double Dipper Cafe (38 South Martine Ave.) in Fanwood, which closed in May after establishing itself as a local icon for more than a decade, is scheduled to reopen under new ownership on Friday, July 1.
The ice cream store is currently being remodeled and will reopen as an ice cream and dessert store called Rocko's. It was purchased at the end of May by Roger Bernier, who is President and COO of The Chelsea on South Avenue in Fanwood.
"I've been part of the business community in Fanwood for a while now and believe in the revitalization of the borough's downtown area. I want to be part of it," said Bernier, who has had the nickname Rocky since his childhood.
"Fanwood is a vibrant town with a lot of young people. The location is terrific and when I spoke to two of my nieces who attend Union Catholic, they agreed with me that Fanwood needs an ice cream place," Bernier added. "It's as simple as that. I'm looking forward to opening on South Martine Avenue on July 1."
When he saw that the business had been put up for sale last month, Bernier spoke to Rob and Brandon Watterson of Nick's Pizza about running the operation with him.
The former Double Dipper offered ice cream and other desserts along with soups and sandwiches. Now, the new management team is going to focus on frozen treats and other desserts and adding an element of fun to the operation.
"We are doing some light renovations, scaling back the menu a bit to have more of a traditional ice cream parlor feel, and changing the atmosphere to make it a fun place for kids and families," said Brandon Watterson, who will oversee day-to-day operations.
"I'm thrilled that the new Rocko's Cafe will be owned and run by individuals who are dedicated to the growth of downtown Fanwood," said Fanwood Mayor Colleen Mahr. "I've had the opportunity to work with Roger Bernier at many events held at The Chelsea, which is itself an important part of the community."
"There are a lot of great things going on in Fanwood," Mahr added. "Rocko's is going to fill a void in our downtown. They can count me among their first customers when they open on July 1st. I am looking forward to having a great ice cream place in Fanwood again."