Wednesday morning, local residents Sheila and Jasper Rajendren unlocked the front door of the Sparrow Cafe to let in customers for the first time.
The new coffee shop has taken up residence in the former Adagio Cafe space at the corner of West 50th Street and Penn Avenue South. The late coffee shop closed last year. Adagio had itself replaced the former Dragonfly Coffee, which closed in 2011.
“It’s been our dream to create a beautiful space where people can savor life while enjoying delicious, healthy food and drink. We will seek out the best artisan roasters who share our commitment to fair trade and eco-friendly practices, and source our baked good and other food items from local suppliers who share our vision,” Sheila Rajendren, wrote in a press release posted on Sparrow Cafe's website.
Calling themselves a "casual morning bistro," rather than a coffee shop, Sparrow currently offers a range of pastries—including some creative-looking doughnuts—"hand-crafted" coffees and espressos, and various sodas and teas. Sparrow plans to add soups and sandwiches soon.
Between the two of them, the Rajendrens have over a decade's worth of experience restaurants and coffee shops. Jasper brings much of the management expertise, according to a bio posted on the store's website, while Sheila comes to the cafe business after a 15-year career in photography, with a sideline in baking.
For now, Sparrow is open 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday-Friday, and 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.