Moe Gabr, his wife and two children moved to the neighborhood in 2010. And though his background is in interior design (his firm is Gabr Design) he started eyeing spots around the neighborhood to open a cafe. The perfect space to do it was at 571 Greene Avenue, a white box located right off Von King Park. Moe completely redesigned the space into a chic but comfortable coffee shop, which opened as Little Roy Coffee Co. in February of last year.
“We wanted to extend the experience of the park,” he said of the location–and all seats from the cafe look out toward the green space. Because the park is mostly surrounded with residential blocks, he felt it was the ideal spot to add a commercial element. And given Moe’s design background, much of the interior detail is custom, including the lighting and wainscoting. “It’s a contemporary feel that compliments the traditional architecture of the neighborhood,” he said.
The menu includes Third Wave Coffee, pastries from Saraghina, plus all the typical cafe fare. There’s food, too, and it’s influenced by Moe’s Egyptian roots. Menu items include hummus, tabbouleh, shakshuka and sandwiches. One of the drinks on the menu, the Helba Latte, was inspired by Egyptian flavors and includes fenugreek, ginger and turmeric.
Since opening about a year ago, “we’ve had a lot of support and now have a lot of regulars,” Moe said. But given the location off the park and away from the major commercial strips, he wants to get the word out to more locals. “We’re rooted in the community,” he said, “The challenge now is just to get more people to know us.” So go check the spot out! And for all you work-from-home types, Little Roy has a relaxed atmosphere and free wi-fi that makes it a nice spot to drink, eat and work away on your computer.