JT’s Café in Blue Point is celebrating its first year in business Sunday with an on-site bash during the annual Bayport-Blue Point St. Patrick’s Day Parade.

The day gets started at JT’s at 11 a.m. with an Irish coffee bar.

A Blue Point Brewery Co. truck is also rolling up, and the JT’s crew will be cooking corn beef and cabbage, hot dogs, hot pretzels and other hot snacks.

Funkin’ A is performing from 1 p.m to 4 p.m. outside, with Dan Donnelly singing Irish tunes inside.

JT’s is located in the former Sage Café where Blue Point meets Bayport at 4 Montauk Highway.

A lot has changed in just the first year at JT’s Café.

The biggest change was with the menu.

“It took us a little while to figure out what the neighborhood wanted,” said café owner Justin Tempelman. “We changed chefs and our menu focus. Originally we were very Southern, New Orleans, sort of Creole-style, which we found out was not an everyday thing for most people.”

Now JT’s is serving up what Tempelman calls “comfort food with a twist.”

He points to the Sriracha-glazed barbecue meatloaf.

“That’s where the twist comes in,” he said. “Most people think they’re going to get the meatloaf with the brown gravy with mushrooms; the way grandma use to make it.”

JT’s Café is Tempelman’s third restaurant under the JT’s brand, with other, JT’s on the Bay, being right here at the Blue Point Marina.

Tempelman’s first restaurant was called JT’s Corner Café, a popular breakfast and lunch spot he opened in his native Nesconset in 1998. He sold that business three years ago and it’s now called The Corner Café.

Tempelman, also a chef by trade, said his specialty had always been breakfast. “Now we get people who are coming here now for breakfast, lunch and dinner in the same day,” he said. 

He also loves both living and working on the South Shore.

“I feel like I’ve been here my whole life, and the people treat me that way, which is awesome,” he said.

Courtesy Photo: JT’s Cafe at 4 Montauk Highway. (Tom Farrell Photography)

parade details:

St. Patrick’s Day Parade – Bayport & Blue Point