ASTORIA – Elevenses, a new bakery/café in the heart of Astoria, designed with great ingenuity and referring to elements from the epic Lord of the Rings, is expected to be a new hotspot in the area.
Located at 34-39 31st Street, Elevenses opened to the public on February 17 in a neighborhood that lacked a similar business. The owner is Greek-American Georgia Koutsoupakis, who made this business move in a difficult time, as New York is struggling to return after a long and difficult period of the pandemic.
As Patch reported, Koutsoupakis is not a new to the industry, as she has been active in the restaurant business for the last seven years. Now, she is launching her own project, emphasizing that the reasons that led her to this decision are varied and relate, among other things, to her willingness to offer quality services.
“One of the reasons why I opened up my own place [is] people aren’t treated well in the kitchen,” Koutsoupakis told Patch.
“Not given a break, not given water, not given food. You could be working 10 hours and you’re eating over a garbage can,” she said of her previous jobs, Patch reported. “You’re not paid well, you’re not treated well.”
“At Elevenses, Koutsoupakis wanted to ‘do the opposite’ — her half dozen employees are paid a living wage, ingredients are sourced from local farmers and purchased at the Union Square Greenmarket, and pastries are priced as affordably as possible to make the shop accessible,” Patch reported.
“Times are not easy for anyone, so we want to accommodate everyone we can,” Koutsoupakis told Patch.
“A lifelong Astoria resident, Koutsoupakis opened the doors to Elevenses this week after a drawn-out, two-year wait exacerbated by the city’s delays in issuing permits,” Patch reported, noting that “Elevenses is part of World Artisan Market, the seven-restaurant complex gradually opening in a converted warehouse along 31st Street.”
“A self-described ‘big nerd,’ Koutsoupakis drew her cafe’s name from the mid-morning meal eaten by Hobbits in the Lord of the Rings universe,” Patch reported.
“It’s basically a time of day when you have something small to eat and something small to drink,” she told Patch.
“The long-awaited opening is emotional for Koutsoupakis, whose father died last May while the shop was still under construction,” Patch reported.
“I wanted him to see this place, and I wanted him to be proud of it,” she told Patch.
Elevenses is open temporarily 8 AM-4 PM, and the soft opening party is set for Friday, February 25, 7 AM-9 PM, Patch reported.
More information is available on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/elevenses_cafe/.