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Takoma coffee shop on track for spring opening

Rendering of the interior of La Mano Coffee Bar

A new coffee shop from the owner of Modern Times, the coffeehouse inside Politics and Prose, is on track for a spring opening, owner Javier Rivas confirms.

Rivas received permits for renovation, plumbing and electrical work at the future La Mano Coffee Bar, at 304 Carroll St. NW, last month.

Despite challenges--a Bread & Chocolate cafe a few blocks away and a proposed Busboys and Poets practically across the street--Rivas and his business partner, Anna Petrillo, think that La Mano is exactly what Takoma needs. "We did a lot of background work on what the community wants and what they didn't get from places in the past," Petrillo says. "We talked to a lot of people who have been there a long time." Rivas and Petrillo have also been holding successful pop-up events on weekends to meet local customers, which have been well received.

Besides, the owners say, a new energy is revitalizing Takoma and neighboring Takoma Park. "The area is changing a lot," Rivas says. "We're getting in at the beginning of this renaissance for Takoma."

The 500-square-foot space that will become La Mano had been empty for about three years, Rivas says. "It's been pretty neglected...there's no infrastructure there." But the space boasts access to transit, high ceilings, and--at least structurally--a usable roof. "We're still in talks with the landlord about the use of the roof," Rivas says. "It would be amazing [to have a rooftop deck] because there's not that many places there [in Takoma] that have a deck."

Read more articles by Rachel Kaufman.

Rachel is the managing editor of Elevation D.C. She also covers tech, business and science for publications nationwide. She lives in Brookland.
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