Dearborn Coffee Shop A Hip Hangout with Gourmet Goods
Caffina Cafe opened in October on Greenfield Road, and offers freshly roasted coffee, as well as a gathering spot for students.
Many parents say they're inspired by their kids. For Dearborn resident Allen Bakri, that inspiration has resulted in the opening of the city's newest hangout, the Caffina Cafe.
Located on Greenfield Road just north of Warren Avenue, the one-month-old cafe is the latest addition to a growing local company–Caffina Coffee–which sells its products to walk-in customers, as well as distributing coffee to businesses and restaurants in Oakland, Macomb, Wayne and Washtenaw Counties.
Bakri started Caffina with roaster and co-owner Mahmoud Sareini in 2001 as strictly a distribution company. Sareini, an 18-year veteran of the nut and coffee roasting business, had previously owned a coffee shop in Dearborn in the late '90s, but the venture didn't work out.
This time around, the men are hoping that added input from Bakri's family–including his children, all in their 20s–can help make it a success.
"My daughter was the mover for all of this," Bakri said of the decor and feel of the shop.
The youthful influence is clear, from the bright orange walls dotted with works by local artists, to the comfy, group-friendly seating and free wireless Internet. Bakri and Mahmoud said they hope it's a welcome chance for teens and 20-somethings, whose social gathering options are often limited to smoke-filled hookah bars.
"It's a nice atmosphere for students to study and have a cup of coffee," Bakri said. "The hookah bar is more social."
His wife, Fahmeh Bakri, agrees.
"We could have done that," she said of the hookah bar concept, "but that's not what we wanted."
And as a mom-and-pop shop, they also wanted to make sure they stood out–both in the atmosphere, and the quality of their goods.
Because they roast their own coffee, Sareini said it's "roasted on an almost daily basis." That also means they can keep their prices lower, for drinks as well as by-the-pound coffee.
Money saved can be spent on any number of the cafe's fresh baked goods, including muffins, cookies and biscotti.
"Everything is fresh and made in-house," Sareini boasted. "The more traffic we get, the more we can make."
Bakri and Sareini agreed that their location–in the less walkable east end of Dearborn, close to Detroit–makes it tough to get foot traffic, but that the response so far is good.
"Everybody walks in and they like it," Bakri said. "New faces start to come in on a regular basis. That's encouraging."
Added Fahmeh Bakri, "We just want this to work."
Caffina Cafe is open from 7 a.m.-10 p.m. Monday-Thursday and Saturday, as well as 7 a.m.-6 p.m. Friday and 7 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday. Check them out online at caffinacoffee.com, plus like them on Facebook and follow them on Twitter.