NORTH ADAMS -- Conversations were flowing among patrons of The Local on Wednesday, the second day of operation for the new eatery at 67 Main St.
"Tuesday was very, very busy," owner Fahri Karakaya said Wednesday. "We were expecting just to have a soft opening, but it seemed to be anything but that. Today has been very busy and very steady. We've been non-stop since about 7:30 a.m."
The new restaurant, which opened in the space formally occupied by Petrino's Café, is open seven days a week, from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m., offering breakfast, lunch and dinner.
"One thing we'll be working on is the speed in the kitchen," he said. "I'm still looking for some quality help in the kitchen. We've heard good things, though, about the quality of the food and about the price. It's very encouraging and I'm committed to improving the quality of service."
His wife, Mel Karakaya, who works alongside him at the restaurant, said that while the first few days have been a learning experience, they're already excited to see community members enjoying the relaxed atmosphere they hoped to create.
"We wanted to create a casual atmosphere, where people come, eat and hang out, where they can work on a project or meet with friends," she said. "We have a young daughter, so we created a space for kids, with a boys' theme on one side and a girls' theme on the other. We have arts and crafts and puzzles and Legos. We want families to be comfortable
In addition to creating the kid's area in the back of the restaurant, where a stage used to be, the couple stripped out the entire space, painting the walls and adding new furniture, which includes booths, tables, high-top tables and couches.
"It needed a fresh look," Mel Karakaya said. "We only left the floor and renewed everything, from the countertops to the furniture."
The Local's menu features breakfast sandwiches, bagels and seasonal fruit cups until 11 a.m., when it switches over to a lunch/dinner menu. The lunch/dinner menu includes a variety of specialty sandwiches, paninis, soups and salads, as well as a children's menu. It also features a variety of fruit smoothies, frozen drinks, espressos, coffees and teas.
"We wanted to offer something different," Fahri Karakaya said. "There are too many pizza places in town and a lot of restaurants. We wanted to offer ... a more casual atmosphere."
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