Aaron Kafka is opening a new 75 seat concept on Emily Carr’s new campus this summer. Kafka, who owns Mt. Pleasant’s popular Kafka’s Coffee & Tea, has just secured the lease and received the keys to the 1,500 sqft, two-level space, which is located at 120-577 Great Northern Way (formerly Momento Coffee House).
It will be called Kafka’s. The concept, however, won’t be identical as the Main Street original. We will, of course, be able to count on quality coffee and tea service, but the food program will be going well above and beyond the realm of the coffee-associative baked good.
Coming on board to design a brand new food program will be chef Tret Jordan, who has been the executive chef at Tableau Bar Bistro and Homer Street Cafe & Bar for the past couple of years. Previously, he worked at Voya, Raincity Grill, William Tell, Bacchus and Elixir, gaining further training at Michelin-starred restaurants like Claridges and Pied a Terre in London. Scout interviewed him a couple of years ago. He’s good people, and talented. (True story: he once sent away for Sea Monkeys as a kid.)
The sort of food Jordan will be making remains a mystery at this point. I’m told he’s only just given his notice and Kafka tells me they have yet to discuss menus. That being said, Jordan will have a nice new kitchen to work with that includes a hood vent, so it doesn’t sound like it will be a restricted electric/induction op.
“I don’t know what he’s going to do,” Kafka admitted during a walk-through of the space, adding that he was excited to find out. “So it could be Polish-Hawaiian?” I half-joked. “We’ll see!” he replied. We do know that when it opens – perhaps as soon as June – the new location of Kafka’s will serve from breakfast, lunch and Happy Hour menus.
The layout of the space should be interesting. The upstairs will have communal tables and a long work/sip bar for the laptop crowd, while the main floor will see more of a convivial, social, restaurant-y atmosphere. With all the new developments flanking the address it would be easy to mistake the building as brand new, but it’s actually many decades old. This is made plain upon closer inspection of the details within. Take a look by clicking through the gallery below (and try to imagine a 20 seat patio out front).