|© Mark Bialek|
by BIllie Ochberg
For eight years, Caffe Dolce has been tucked into the back corner of the Country Creek Plaza. This fall, it’s finally expanding. Owners Alex and Michelle Petrut need the room. On a recent day at lunch, their little 800-square-foot space was packed with diners eating everything from freshly baked pecan sticky buns and almond roca cookies to chicken salad with apples, cranberries, and celery on grilled pita. Both the outdoor bistro tables were taken, and more customers stood in line waiting for a sandwich to go.
In their new location about 100 yards west, the Petruts will have three times the space, a drive-through window, a fireplace, plenty of comfortable chairs, free Wi-Fi, wraparound windows, and expanded hours. Alex, who does the baking, is anxious to expand his offerings. “I plan to start making our own bagels, New York style with a good chew and plenty of flavor,” he says. He will also start baking his own bread and add more soups, sandwiches, and pastas to the menu.
Alex started out as a machine mechanic at Interstate Bakeries Corporation. Michelle studied elementary education. But their honeymoon changed everything for them. Wandering in and out of Parisian cafes, the newlyweds decided that someday they would run their own. Now they do.
Caffe Dolce, 7025 East Michigan, suite N (Country Creek Plaza), Saline; starting late September, 6961 East Michigan, Saline. 944–5305. Mon.–Fri. 6 a.m.–6 p.m., Sat. 8 a.m.–5 p.m., Sun. 9:30 a.m.–2 p.m. Expected hours at new address: Mon.–Fri. 5 a.m.–9:30 p.m., Sat. & Sun. 7 a.m.–9:30 p.m. www.caffedolcecoffeehouse.com
Even before his family came to the United States, Sam Ayoub knew he wanted to work in the restaurant business. At age fifteen, he met a friend and future business partner, Haider Bazzi, who was ten, on the plane coming here. “My family was from Lebanon, and Haider’s was from Greece, heading to America, the land of opportunity,” chuckles Ayoub. That was more than thirty years ago. This September they plan
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