Bradenton locals can now travel to the Mediterranean without ever leaving town, thanks to the brand new Kefi Streetside Café. Located in downtown Bradenton in the old Teller’s location, this trendy walk-up café offers a variety of delicious coffee beverages, baked goods, and breakfast items. There’s also plenty of outdoor seating and a beautiful new pergola that provides shade for customers who want to relax and stay awhile.
Owners Eleni Sokos and Jason Simpson have an exciting vision for Kefi. Not only will it provide a much-needed dining option for those who work in this vibrant downtown area, but they also see it as a gathering place where people can hang out, socialize, and collaborate. Since it’s conveniently located between downtown Bradenton and the Village of the Arts, they see it as a walkable destination that will appeal to both visitors and locals throughout the surrounding area.
Inspired by the trendy and healthy Mediterranean Diet, Kefi offers many delicious menu items. Two of the most popular are “”The Seasonal,” which is an avocado toast with feta, sundried tomato, and kalamata olives, and the classic Greek Yogurt Parfait that is made with spiced cherries and an almond brittle crunch. Jason has also incorporated his Kentucky roots with his signature Louisville Iced Tea, which is aged in a bourbon barrel and tastes like an Old Fashioned!
Most of the menu items are vegetarian, with the option to add meat. There are also vegan and gluten-free items available. The café will continue to expand, with lunch items and catering both coming in early 2022.
An Exciting Vision Comes to Life
The opening of the cafe was truly serendipity. Despite not really having a clear plan, when Eleni and Jason learned that the space was available earlier this year, they quickly jumped on the opportunity to take it over.
Eleni, who was born and raised in Bradenton, grew up in the restaurant business. Her family has owned the successful pizza restaurant Demetrios for over 45 years. She also has a marketing background, having opened her own firm right out of college. Jason’s background is in the craft beer industry, which helped him make the natural move into coffee beverages.
The cafe’s Mediterranean flair is largely due to Eleni’s heritage. She says that not being able to travel during the pandemic gave them the idea to focus their efforts on creating a place that felt like a vacation. Their goal was to create the type of café that they would want to go to if they were visiting another city.
Even with a few obstacles they encountered before opening, Eleni and Jason have thrived in this new environment. “Seeing Jason find his element and his community in Bradenton has been rewarding for me.” Eleni says.
When asked what makes the new café unique, Eleni explained their number one goal is to “make people happier than they were when they first got here.” This also helps explain the café’s name. Kefi, (pronounced KEH-fee) is a Greek word that means “the joyful beauty of feeling alive.”
Visit Kefi Streetside Café
Kefi Streetside Café is located at 1201 6th Ave W. Bradenton, FL 34205 (you can’t miss the beautiful painted mural). Their hours are Monday to Friday from 7 am to 3 pm and Saturday from 8 am to 3 pm. They are closed on Sundays.
Kefi will be having a grand opening celebration in January, but we recommend you check it out today! You’ll also want to visit their Facebook Page for the latest news and updates, and their website, where you can get a look at their seasonal menu. When you stop by to visit, be sure to tell them you heard about it on Discover Bradenton!