May 6, 2021 By Michael Dorgan
A local couple will open a new café in Sunnyside Friday – their first business venture together and just three months after the arrival of their second child.
Elena Dominguez Cardozo and Octavio Dominguez Campos, a husband and wife duo, will open The Spot Café at 43-24 43rd Ave. tomorrow.
The new establishment will serve cold-cut sandwiches, wraps, salads, pastries and hamburgers. It will also offer teas and coffees as well as a wide range of smoothies and fruit juices.
“It has been a lifelong goal for both of us to open a place together,” Elena said. “We also felt there was a need in the community for a café that sells healthy food and drinks.”
The pair will operate out of a 575 square foot space that was previously occupied by a Chinese restaurant. They have just completed a seven-month overhaul of the premises that included revamping the interior and exterior of the building as well as fitting a new kitchen.
The café will be open for takeout, delivery and to-go counter service and will not have indoor dining to begin with.
The old awning has been torn down and the original façade has been freshened up and painted a wine color. New signage bearing the company name has gone up, along with a white vertical sign that reads “grill n snacks.”
Elena, 25, who has lived in Sunnyside her entire life, said that she came up with the name for the café based on past discussions with friends and family.
“My friends and family would always ask if I knew of a good place or ‘spot’ in the neighborhood to eat or get some drinks so I thought it would be a nice fit for our own café. I think it’s catchy!” Elena said.
The owners plan on adding high stools and a counter for customers in the near future. They are also considering putting a table and some chairs outside for customers to enjoy.
The renovations to the space began in October and Cardozo gave birth to their second child, a baby boy, in January. The couple also have a 6-year-old daughter together.
“It’s been a crazy few months but it will be worth the wait,” Elena said.
Elena, who is of Mexican descent, previously managed a restaurant in Corona that is owned by her family, while her husband has managed a deli and a juice bar. Octavio, 30, immigrated to the U.S. from Mexico in 2005.
The Spot Café, Elena said, will only serve drinks, snack bars, as well as pastries from third-party suppliers for the first two weeks since they are waiting on a permit to open the kitchen. The issuance of permit has been delayed by the pandemic, she said.
She said they will bake their own pastries and prepare all of their own foods once the permit comes through. The café will also offer deep-fried snacks like chicken wings and mozzarella sticks.
Elena said she is excited to open and is looking forward to serving the neighborhood.
“We want the community to feel the café is their home and we hope they embrace us with open arms.”
The café will be open Mondays through Sundays from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.