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The Story of Deneen Mugs


When Egg Harbor Café owners Mike and Aimee Farrell visited a Wisconsin Bed and Breakfast for a short vacation in 2005, they did not anticipate encountering the stoneware that would eventually set the tables and serve up coffee, soups and breakfast bowls at every Egg Harbor Café location. Mike knew that there was something special about the coffee mug that he brought back to his office, and he was sure that our guests would agree, so he contacted Deneen Pottery in St. Paul, MN to begin creating our signature mug. Today, Egg Harbor Café visitors love the beauty and durability of these hand-thrown Deneen mugs, and many purchase them to take home as a reminder of their dining experience.

It’s easy to see why Egg Harbor Café and Deneen Pottery have crafted a solid, longstanding relationship, as both family-owned and operated companies share a passion for creativity, quality and community. What’s remarkable is the story of Deneen Pottery, a thriving business today after having evolved through several dramatic turns since Peter Deneen opened his first ceramics studio and retail shop in 1972.

Inspired by the bond between art and industry and drawn to practical art forms, Peter and his wife Mary went to work and began creating hand thrown decorative pottery to sell in their own store and through other outlets. The company grew over the years, but when one of their major buyers defaulted on a large payment in 1988, the Deneens went through bankruptcy and had to sell the business to make ends meet. Peter continued as an employee for several years, until he was able to start afresh with a new pottery business in 1991. Refining the signature Glaze Engraving process, Deneen Pottery built a strong niche crafting Bed and Breakfast stoneware. Peter hired his son Niles Deneen in 2006 to head up sales and marketing, and in 2012 Niles became an owner and CEO of this thriving family business. Today Deneen Pottery occupies over 17,000 square feet and employs more than 50 skilled craftspeople. Egg Harbor Café is delighted to be one of the largest purchasers of these beautiful, quality custom mugs and bowls. Whenever we see our guests lingering over a steaming cup of coffee, hear that someone is collecting mugs from all of their favorite Egg Harbor Café locations or fulfill a mug order online, we offer a toast to our amazing partners, Deneen Pottery.

Want to see what goes into making one of our mugs? Find out here.

Want to purchase an Egg Harbor Cafe mug? Our mugs are available for purchase at every restaurant location and online here.