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Once equestrian pals, Whalen and Bentley now partners (and in-laws)
4/07/17

Kristen Kovatch Bentley and Kaitlyn Bently Whalen pour coffee at the Powell Campus Center.

Kristen Kovatch Bentley and Kaitlyn Bently Whalen pour coffee at the Powell Campus Center.

Alfred University alumnae Kaitlyn Bentley Whalen ’12 and Kristen Kovatch Bentley ’10 brew a fine cup of coffee.

The two were friends as Alfred University students and members of the University’s equestrian team; now they’re in business together, with Whalen having purchased the Dalahast Roasting Company and adding its coffee beans to the products offered by Peterson Farm, in Jamestown, N.Y., which she runs along with her grandfather, Allen Peterson, who started the farm more than 50 years ago.

Bentley, currently the editor of the magazine Horse Nation, is helping out with promotions. The two also share another connection: Kaitlyn introduced her brother Erik to Kristen, and the two married. Kaitlyn herself is married to Alfred University alumnus Scott Whalen ’12.

Kaitlyn and Kristen visited Alfred University’s Powell Campus Center Wednesday and set up a Dalahast coffee shop on the third floor. Students, faculty and staff stopped by to sample the two roasts – both are nicely balanced brews – and filled out questionnaires that the two entrepreneurs will use for future developments.

Kaitlyn said the coffee beans are available in both whole and ground form through Peterson Farm, which also offers a range of Scandinavian food products.

“Dalahast” is Scandinavian, she noted, for Dala Horse, or Dalecarlian Horse – the brightly painted wooden horse statue that adults carved for their children in the Swedish province Dalarna.