‘A Significant Partnership’: Caffeine & Carburetors Raises $16,000 for NCCF

What New Canaanites know today as “Caffeine & Carburetors” had a short test run in 1995, outside of Doug Zumbach’s eponymous coffee shop on Grove and Pine Streets. It was a small gathering of just 30 cars and, though it was fun, the event was halted for several years—until about 15 years ago, when Zumbach resurrected the gathering of auto enthusiasts in what has become what he calls “the modern day Caffeine & Carburetors.”

This year, the town approved two of the hugely popular shows—one held downtown on June 16, and another planned for Oct. 20 at Waveny. For the first time in C&C history, that first show raised significant funds for a respected New Canaan nonprofit organization—a longtime goal of Zumbach’s. The Zumbach’s/C&C director of business development, Claire Drexler, said, “We’re so excited that the event has grown to this size where we’re able to leverage it in a way that gives back to the community, and we are really excited to continue to do so in the future.”

Last week, Drexler and Zumbach presented the New Canaan Community Foundation with a $16,000 check.

Soggy Conditions at Waveny Prompt Cancellation of Final ‘Caffeine & Carburetors’ of 2023

Heavy rainfall in recent weeks has forced organizers to cancel the final Caffeine & Carburetors car show of 2023. Scheduled for Sunday at Waveny Park, the antique and specialty auto show will not be held and the series will return next year, C&C founder Doug Zumbach said. “I thought about it over this past weekend, and there was really no reason to delay the decision,” Zumbach told NewCanaanite.com on Wednesday from inside his eponymous coffee shop at Pine and Grove Streets, where Caffeine & Carburetors began. Zumbach said he’s been visiting Waveny every other day to track conditions, and he grew especially concerned about the forecourt at the main house. “We’re just one of many events that have been canceled due to this rain that we have every weekend,” he said.

PHOTOS: Caffeine & Carburetors Returns to Downtown New Canaan

Thousands of classic and specialty auto enthusiasts visited downtown New Canaan on Sunday morning for the hugely popular Caffeine & Carburetors car show. Founded and run by New Canaan’s Doug Zumbach, owner of the eponymous coffee shop at Pine and Grove Streets, the three-hour event included a new rule this time around, where those showing their vehicles were required to stay to the end of the show. “People seem to be abiding by the new directive—there are a lot of good questions about it, some people have come and turned around because they do want to leave a little earlier,” Zumbach told NewCanaanite.com as police, volunteers and the Community Emergency Response Team or “CERT” directed pedestrians and motorists safely across Park Street on a clear, cool morning. 

“The show is going very well,” Zumbach said. “Very organized, civil. So it seems to be working out nicely.”

Held on all-pedestrian stretches of Pine and Elm Streets, Caffeine & Carburetors featured about 1,500 show cars, Zumbach said.

PHOTOS: Thousands Attend First ‘Caffeine & Carburetors’ of 2023

Droves of car enthusiasts hit downtown New Canaan on Sunday for the first Caffeine & Carburetors show of 2023. Classic and specialty autos lined Pine and Elm Streets, and abutting lots, for three hours on a clear, crisp morning. C&C founder Doug Zumbach, a town resident and owner of the eponymous coffee shop at Pine and Grove Streets, estimated 1,500 show cars and an additional 1,500 spectator cars. Police, Zumbach’s volunteers and members of the New Canaan Community Emergency Response Team, or “CERT,” helped direct pedestrians and drivers to ensure safety. “The weather cleared out for us,” Zumbach said as attendees ogled and photographed the antique and high-end cars and motorcycles parked along Pine Street.

Zumbach’s Plans Second Coffee Shop on Burtis Avenue

New Canaan’s best-established and locally owned coffee shop is planning to open a second location downtown. 

Zumbach’s Gourmet Coffee, a hub of activity at the corner of Pine and Grove Streets, is planning to open a shop on Burtis Avenue, according to an application submitted to Planning & Zoning. “Doug has leased a space at the above referenced address where he plans to open a second coffee shop location offering an expanded selection of handmade coffees including cold-brew as well as nitro-brew coffees,” Paul Tully of Imian Partners LLC, representing the property owner, said in an April 14 letter to Town Assistant Planner/Zoning Inspector Sarah Carey. Tully referred to New Canaan’s Doug Zumbach, owner of the eponymous coffee shop that also founded the popular car show “Caffeine & Carburetors.”

The commercial building at 22 Burtis Ave. is located in the Business A
Zone. Under the New Canaan Zoning Regulations, site plan approval is required from the Planning & Zoning Commission.