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What We Ate On ... Monday
Staff Reports On: 06:48PM / Wednesday June 20, 2012

We had an Asian salad with salmon from The Local in North Adams. We usually have the Harvest Chicken Salad — apple slices and gorgonzola cheese! but we were in the mood for different fruit, like mandarin oranges. Then we were offered the choice of chicken or salmon. Salmon, of course. (BTW, if you're at The Hub, try the salmon sliders.) It's a definite recommend: the fish was flaky and not overcooked, greens were crisp and the sesame dressing sweet. You also get a choice of apple or baguette. Good choice for a hot day.

New Cafe to Open in North Adams
By Tammy Daniels On: 04:00PM / Friday December 30, 2011

Fahri Karakaya is renovating and updating the former Petrino's on Main Street and plans to reopen it as The Local cafe this spring.
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Fahri Karakaya was wandering the city's downtown looking for opportunity last September when he realized something was missing.

"There was no place to really sit down, have a coffee, relax," said the West Palm Beach, Fla., transplant on Friday. Plenty of restaurants, pizza places, but no casual coffeehouse on the main drag. That, he decided, was his opportunity.

He plans on opening a cafe, The Local, with coffees, espresso, sandwiches on fresh-baked breads, light breakfast, homemade soups and some hot offerings for dinner. Karakaya described his vision as similar to a Panera.

"When you come in for coffee, you're going to smell the bagels and the fresh-baked bread," he said.

Not surprisingly, Karakaya turned to the empty Boston Store location on the corner of Holden and Main streets, a prime spot that's hosted coffeehouses and a sandwich shop over the past dozen years or so. The last in there was Petrino's, which closed in March after owner Mark Petrino took a job offer in Colorado.

That's left a hole on Main Street that Karakaya is hoping to fill.

"This is my commitment to do something nice, good service, simple, fresh food," said Karakaya, who's confidant — but still a little anxious — over this new venture.

He's got 25 years in food service, but that's managing in high-end resorts and five-star restaurants, most recently at the Breakers in Palm Beach. "There aren't many of those around here," he laughed.

Karakaya and his family moved to Williamstown earlier this year after his wife, Melahat Karakaya, took the position as innkeeper at the Porches after falling in love with the area, especially Williamstown Elementary School for their 5-year-old daughter Ece Lina.

Now he's planning to take his experience in five-star food and exemplary service and simplify it for more casual — but high quality —  family friendly offerings. A comfortable cafe where people can meet and relax.

The former Petrino's will be renovated and updated with a mix of booths, couches and high tables along with the popular counter seating in the storefront window. Wi-fi will be available. The stage area in the back will be turned into a kids' zone.

"If your kids are happy, you are happy," explained Karakaya, who's considering hosting children's parties and other family gatherings. "I want to do something unique."

He said building owner Scarafoni Associates has been very helpful with his plans.

New equipment will be installed and the counters and display cases will allow customers to see and select their fare. Offerings will include coffees (light, dark, roasted, decaf and seasonal flavors), espresso, fresh fruit smoothies, salads, panini and deli sandwiches, bagels, danish, and four soups daily.

The cafe will be open seven days a week for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Karakaya hopes to open in March.

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News Headlines
Adams-Cheshire District Pledges Better Communication With Cheshire
Tyer, Bianchi Set Priorities in West Side Initiative Debate
SABIC to Leave Pittsfield; 300 Area Jobs to Be Lost
Cheshire Fire Department Treasurer Accused of Larceny
Pittsfield Housing Authority: Worcester's Program Not A Fit Here
Lanesborough FinCom Continues Discussion On School Funding
North Adams Fire Department Opens Doors To Public
Clarksburg Voters to Decide School Feasibility Funding
Pittsfield Approves Renaming Pitt Park For Reverand Durant
Heating Leak Causes Thursday Closure at Williamstown Elementary

Stephanie Farrington of Berkshire Food is contributing to our Eats blog — all about food, all the time. 


Seasonal Farmers Markets

Berkshire South Community Market
15 Crissey Road, Great Barrington
Saturdays through Oct. 27 from 11 to 3

Berkshire Mall Market
Sears parking lot, Route 8
Wednesdays & Saturdays through November from 8 to 2

North Adams Farmers Market
St. Anthony's Municipal Parking
Saturdays through Oct. 27 from 8 to noon

Great Barrington Farmers Market
Taconic Avenue & Castle Street
Saturdays through October from 9 to 1

Lenox Farmers Market
70 Kemble St., Shakespeare & Company
Fridays through Oct. 5 from 1 to 5

Oits Farmers Market
L & M Auto, 2000 East Otis Road (Rte. 23)
Saturdays through Oct. 6 from 9 to 1

Pittsfield Farmers Market
First and Fenn streets, across from the Common
Saturdays, May 11 through Oct. 26, from 9 to 1

Sheffield Farmers Market
Old Parish Church, Main Street
Fridays through September from 3 to 7

Williamstown Farmers Market
Spring Street parking lot
Saturdays, May 25 through October, from 9 to 1

Hoosick Falls, N.Y.
The Armory
Wednesdays, 4 to 7


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