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The Dig Callback: At McNulty's Tea & Coffee, A Time-Honored Shop Meets A New Normal

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) - On The Dig, CBS2's Elle McLogan unearths gems in local food and culture. In one past episode, she visited McNulty's Tea & Coffee, caffeine purveyor to Greenwich Village since 1895. In this update, she checks in to hear how the business is adapting amid the upheaval surrounding the coronavirus pandemic.

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Over a hundred teas and coffees line wooden shelves in the old-world shop, whose tin ceilings, apothecary jars, and century-old scales lend the impression of a small museum. David Wong began working part-time at McNulty's back in high school. Now, he runs the place alongside his father Wing and nephew Chris.

McNulty's is a family tradition for many customers as well, who were first brought in by parents or grandparents. Some devotees first stopped in as NYU students.

"And now, they're in their sixties," David said.

A catalog of regular visitors' preferred coffee blends includes a card dated 1972 for then-customer Katharine Hepburn.

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Locals and tourists kept the business going until the COVID-19 pandemic forced temporary closure.

"It was a tough three and a half months," owner David Wong said. "About a month ago, we reopened the shop for walk-in customers, and people are coming back slowly but surely."

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For now, David is focused on the present.

"You can't look too far ahead. You don't know what's in the future," he said.

"As long as we're getting business, we're grateful. We're happy. That's all we can ask for at a time like this."

McNulty's Tea and Coffee
109 Christopher Street
New York, NY 10014
(800) 356-5200

What's something few people know about but everybody should? Whatever it is, Elle McLogan is tracking it down on The Dig. Join her hunt for treasures hidden across our area. Follow Elle on Twitter and Instagram.

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