By DONALD WITTKOWSKI
Once again, mixed in with the smell of salt air and sunscreen on Sea Isle City’s beaches this summer will be the aroma of freshly brewed iced coffee.
Sea Isle is preparing to seek a new contract with a vendor that will sell iced coffee on the beach. City Council is expected at its meeting Tuesday to authorize competitive bids from companies wanting the coffee concession.
“This is just another example of how city leaders want to ensure that the Sea Isle beach experience is as memorable and as enjoyable as possible,” city spokeswoman Katherine Custer said.
Iced coffee is among the treats that Sea Isle offers to hungry and thirsty beachgoers. In separate contracts, the city also allows ice cream and acai bowls to be sold on the beaches.
Hotdog vendors are allowed to operate at eight beach locations: 32nd Street, 40th Street, 52nd Street, 59th Street, 75th Street, 77th Street, 81st Street and 85th Street. By state law, the licenses to sell hotdogs are given to military veterans.
“We have wonderful beaches, but these added amenities make going to the beach even more memorable,” Custer noted of all of the food and drink concessions.
Starting in 2022, Sea Isle expanded its beach menu by approving a two-year contract with Beach Brew USA for iced coffee. Beach Brew’s baristas pushed specially designed carts that were essentially mini coffee bars up and down the beaches.
Coffee lovers had their brew made fresh, right in front of them. Flavors included caramel, mocha, hazelnut, vanilla and “dirty banana” for $7 per cup.
Beachgoers also had their choice of different flavored creamers, including half and half and almond milk, to go with their gourmet coffee. Decaf coffee was another option.
Beach Brew USA agreed to pay Sea Isle a little more than $45,000 over two years for the coffee concession under the previous contract. It is not clear whether the company intends to bid on the new iced coffee contract.
According to its Facebook page, Beach Brew also has contracts to sell iced coffee on the beaches of North Wildwood and Wildwood Crest.
Taken together, beachgoers have a long list of treats they can purchase while soaking up the rays on Sea Isle’s shoreline.
For years, they have been able to buy chocolate bars, children’s novelty treats, ice cream sandwiches and other frozen goodies.
Oil Depot LLC took over the ice cream concession in 2023 after it beat out Sea Isle’s former beach ice cream vendor, the Fudgy Wudgy Man, by making a bigger offer on a two-year contract.
In another two-year beach concession contract, Sea Isle hired Luna Soul & Bowls in 2023 to sell acai bowls topped with fresh fruit, granola, seeds, nuts, peanut butter and other delights.