Le Cafetier Sutton, started in 2008 by Josée Francoeur and Jean-françois Trudel, recently decided to close its doors. Serving as a community hub, Le Cafetier was a special place for many, but villagers won’t be losing their space any time soon. Molly Superfine-rivera and her husband and business partner Mehdi Brunet-benkritly, who own the Marconi restaurant in Montreal, are taking over the space after moving to the area. Mollies Café Dinette Buvette will bring somewhat of a different menu to customers, but the community will remain at its heart.
“The restaurant business is quite stressful and difficult, with a lot of engagements and my partner Josée and I needed a bit more time for ourselves,” explained Trudel.
Trudel said that they found the right owners in Superfine-rivera and Brunetbenkritly. “It’s been clear with them that they will pursue the mission and of course it will be different, but they want to be close to the community like we were. I think they will do a good job.”
“We want to keep providing the community with their gathering spot,” said Superfine-rivera. “Le Cafetier did serve that need and people felt like it was a place for everyone. We are definitely keeping that up. It’s not going to be out of reach for people. We are keeping our prices and food selection accessible and approachable.”
Superfine-rivera has worked in the service industry for 14 years while Brunet-benkritly has been a chef for 20. They decided to do something outside of Montreal when it became too much with family life.
“The idea of opening something in the daytime became tempting; to be able to be involved and work full-time and follow a school schedule. Now, with having this, I can do what I love, be involved in the community extensively, and pick up my son at the end of the day and be present.”
The sense of community attracted them to Sutton, and they want Mollies Café Dinette Buvette to contribute to that. “We want it to be a place where all the locals feel like they can gather and bring their families, their friends, or for people when they are visiting. More importantly, we want to keep it a place that locals can call their own.”
Superfine-rivera said that people were nervous at first when they found out that a new business was coming in. “A lot of people keep walking in and they say how it’s exciting to see some fresh ideas coming through. I think at first people were afraid of what we would do and come in and do a complete re-haul with a modern niche restaurant, there were a lot of comments about that. That is not what we are doing.”
Along with their chef de cuisine from Marconi, who also moved to the region, Mollies will be providing a classic diner food menu with their own touch. “You can have eggs with whatever side, french toast, pancakes. For lunch we are going to have sandwiches and salads. Eventually, will have a schedule of rotating weekly or monthly special.”
Their menu will be supported by local produce. “Most of our stuff will be coming from local farmers right down to the eggs and milk.”
After the restaurant is up and running, Superfine-rivera hopes to offer the space one night a week for events. “I’d like to eventually do a night for people to use the space as they wish Like if someone wants to host a spoken word night, a poetry reading night or an atelier, a mushroom picking atelier like on Tuesday evening when it’s really just the locals around so they can use the space for themselves. I’d like to get people involved.”
And she wants to keep the restaurant open late three nights a week where they will serve alcohol. “We are calling it a buvette; simple snacks and simple little bites.”
Mollies will be keeping up the tradition of Le Cafetier by having a space for local artists to showcase and sell their work and they will be keeping the same staff on hand. “For the community, it will be fun for them to see some familiar faces.”
After 13 years, Trudel wanted to thank all of those that supported Le Cafetier Sutton. “We were the heart of the village, but what makes the heart of the village isn’t Le Cafetier; it’s the clients that come here that make it happen and make it the centre of the village.”
Mollies Café Dinette Buvette will be opening its doors on Nov. 4.