The owners of Esplanade Studios, Louisiana’s largest sound-recording facility, opened a healthy, “low-waste” coffee shop and cafe on Broad Street over the weekend, Lamara Coffee & Kitchen.
Misha Kachkachishvili and Diane Heying started planning the studio-adjacent cafe and smoothie bar last year after seeing clients and crews in search of healthy nearby food options. In addition to coffee, tea, and smoothies, Heying crafted a food menu with vegetable-focused but hearty breakfast items like tacos with spiced tofu and beans, avocado, and cashew creme, a high-protein waffle with berries, and a twist on eggs benedict. For lunch, a lentil and tempeh burger, rainbow tostadas, and a spring roll bowl are among the options.
Lamara is cash-free, rare if not unprecedented in New Orleans, and aims to be low-waste by encouraging customers to participate in its glass jar exchange program: you can take your (cold) drink to go in a glass jar for an extra $1, a deposit refunded when you bring the glass back clean or dirty. The cafe plans to limit single-use products to requests only, if customers are “unable to participate” in the exchange program.
The Mid City cafe (1300 N. Broad Street) is open Monday through Saturday, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., with plans to debut a full back patio, serve booze, and stay open until 8 p.m. beginning in late September.
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