New to Amherst, K’s Nutrition serves delicious, pretty drinks (with the *good* ice!)
K’s Nutrition, an exciting new addition to Amherst’s cafes, is owned and run by Bryant Keeney with the help of his family. The shop is best known for its delectable protein milkshakes, juice refreshers, protein sweets, iced and hot coffees, and acai bowls. They even have a kids’ drink menu featuring famous Marvel and Disney characters. The store opened up on October 8, 2022. If you are interested in having a delicious drink and being a part of a welcoming community filled with great vibes, stop by their spot at 377 College Street.
ALB: What is K’s Nutrition?
BK: Well to be very cliche, we’re just a drink cafe, but we try to prioritize a healthier alternative to [the drink market out there]. We offer healthy protein shakes that taste like milkshakes or green tea refreshers. Another huge aspect is the community. We have so many people that we call by name, so there’s a really good connection with them.
ALB: How did you start K’s Nutrition?
BK: This kind of started about two years ago. I had just graduated from high school and got a job at a shop very similar where a couple took me under their wing. After some time, I thought, “Yeah this is cool, but I’d like to do this myself!” With this business, I put my own twist onto things.
ALB: What made you want to start this business?
BK: It was a certain feeling that I got when I was working at my previous job. There was something that transcended the drinks. it wasn’t a transactional thing that you might have at a Starbucks or a Dunkin. There was more of an interpersonal relationship that really impacted me. I also really liked the products. I mean they taste good and they’re healthier for you. That’s why I decided to start it up.
ALB: What was the beginning process like?
BK: That started by asking the owner from my previous job how things run, and luckily [the couple] was super open to helping me. After, it was about finding the right location, and that’s when we stumbled upon Amherst. There was a certain buzz to Amherst that not every town or city has, so we decided to start building out. We wanted to make it an inviting atmosphere, so a lot of work went into design about the aesthetic of the place.
ALB: What have been some challenges?
BK: Just one after another. If anything can go wrong it will go wrong when you start a business, I say that sarcastically, but there were little bumps along the way that eventually all kind of just smoothed out. You just gotta persist through them.
ALB: What has been a success?
BK: There have been tons of successes so far, luckily. I’ve been very blessed with that. Just the people that come through the door, I think that’s a huge success. There’s a certain community we have now, like regulars that I know I’m going to have tomorrow morning. Other successes are that we’ve done a lot of fundraisings and helped out teams. We’ve done drink drops, where we give free drinks to local high schools as well as fundraisers for sports teams, like the cheer team at UMass Amherst. Giving back to the community has been a pretty good success so far.
ALB: Any future plans?
BK: We’re always open to a lot of stuff but we don’t really have anything aligned right now. We’re still pretty new to this spot, so it’s more about trying to establish this place, and then maybe down the line, we’ll look into [branching out]. For right now, Amherst is my main focus. I really like it here.
ALB: What kept you motivated?
BK: It’s funny. I was listening to something about there being a difference between motivation and a purpose because you’re not always going to be motivated. I wake up some mornings and don’t want to move because it’s cold and the sun isn’t even up. So unfortunately you have to kinda get past the motivation because it’s only a short burst. There has to be something other than motivation, like a purpose, and that roots back to the people. Don’t get me wrong, the drinks are fantastic, but there are the people [that are the purpose]. It’s more than just some drinks.
ALB: Can you touch on the family-owned business part of it all?
BK: My mom works here and is like the community mom. My sister works here as much as she can and runs the social media accounts; she’s really good with that and understands trends. I’m not as hip as her so she definitely kills that one. And my dad helps out on the back end helping organize stuff. They all have their own different roles, but they all help out.
ALB: Were you the first person to kick it off?
BK: Yeah, it’s my business, but [the family] is such an integral part of the business that this place wouldn’t be as close to what it is without them.
ALB: Who can join the K’s Nutrition team?
BK: Oh yeah! We have two other girls that work here that I’ve met through the journey of opening and stuff, and we will hire people who are not blood-related!
ALB: What platforms are you on?
BK: We have a Facebook, and it’s funny you asked, because a couple of people said that we should get on Twitter. I’m always on Twitter and never on Instagram, so we’re gonna start a Twitter as well. But, Facebook (K’s), Instagram (@ks_nutrition), Twitter, and TikTok are where you can find us. Our menu is also online at https://www.ksamherst.com/.
ALB: Anything you want people to know?
BK: I want people to know the experience and the feeling of coming in here. You can read an article or hear about it, there’s a difference between reading something and feeling it. Being here is the “it factor.” We really care about the people that come in!