Scoop: Mad Martha’s is moving

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The Mad Martha’s ice cream shop in Vineyard Haven is moving from its Main Street location to 24 Union St., owner Brook Katzen confirmed.

“The space we were in before didn’t work well for us,” Katzen told The Times of the building at 48 Main St. “It’s a small and awkward configuration.”

As a result, the shop was only able to accommodate two employees while other Mad Martha’s locations in Oak Bluffs and Edgartown can staff four employees to meet customer demand.

Katzen purchased the location at 34 Union St. for $1.1 million on Dec. 27 from Leo Paul DeSorcy, trustee of Bike Shop Realty Trust, according to real estate records. He purchased the Mad Martha’s locations and businesses last spring for $8.2 million.

Katzen said the Vineyard Haven move is a return of Mad Martha’s to Union Street. It was previously located in the building that now houses Salvatore’s Restaurant, he said.

Not only is the space bigger, but it provides greater visibility — especially for ferry traffic, Katzen said. Meanwhile, Sam Dunn is redeveloping the space around the Old Stone Bank on Main Street with the combination of commercial and residential properties.

“That’s really exciting,” Katzen said about the work being done in that area. “There’s a lot of positive changes happening in Vineyard Haven.”

As for the Main Street building, Katzen said he has entered into a lease with caterer Spring Sheldon to use that building. Sheldon had already been using the kitchen in the basement of Mad Martha’s for her catering business, Katzen said.

Katzen said Sheldon intends to use the space for special events and a food store. There are no plans to turn it into a restaurant, he said.

Sheldon, who also operates the El Gato Grande food truck, told The Times her new venture will be called S & S Kitchenette. Along with operating her catering business out of the kitchen, she’ll be doing prepared meals and a small grocery upstairs where she’ll sell prepared meals such as taco kits, pizza kits, and pre-made enchiladas. She plans to use the space for cooking classes, chef dinners, and private functions such as rehearsal dinners, she said.

“We’re going to be as year-round as possible,” she said, noting that she’ll likely close in January and February to give employees a break.

Sheldon in the process of getting necessary permits from the town. She’s received sign-offs from wastewater and the board of health and is awaiting a common victualer’s license. Her goal is to be open by mid to late April.