Three have opened in recent weeks and one is set to open Friday at 11 a.m. when Bryan and Latoya Landers open the B&L Caribbean Café at 10 W. Pomfret St.
It’s another step up for the couple who started out with their B&L Dogz hot dog cart parked at workplaces to catch the crowds on lunch breaks. The cart graduated to a food truck that’s been to festivals and events throughout the area.
Now, it’s time to bring a taste of Bryan’s home, St. Lucia, to the town that’s welcomed him in.
“It’s been quite a ride,” Bryan said.
Latoya said the café featuring Caribbean-style food is the next step on the journey. The menu includes Southern style chicken and waffles, jerk chicken, ox tail, rice and beans and other Caribbean specialties with occasional Friday specials like a fish or seafood platter. Bryan’s also planning to add island smoothies to the menu for a healthy option.
Wine lists from Castlerigg’s will also be available so, since the back yard of the wine shop on South Hanover Street connects to the backyard of the cafe, it won’t be a challenge to procure a bottle of wine for the BYOB restaurant.
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Bryan promised a “good vibe and good food” at the restaurant which, from the smell of the food to the banana tree in the backyard to the mural in the restroom, is Bryan’s effort to be an ambassador for his home island.
“I’m making it a way to introduce my culture to Carlisle which has given so much opportunity,” he said. “I’m bringing a little bit of St. Lucia to Carlisle.”
Dough & Arrows
Another newcomer, Dough & Arrows, celebrated a ribbon cutting on Sept. 9 followed by their official grand opening on Sept. 11.
“It’s such a huge relief after all of the setbacks we’ve had to actually finally have people in the shop,” said Crystal Blevins, who owns the shop with her husband, Brandon.
Difficulties with contractors forced the couple to take over the entire renovation project at 105 N. Hanover St. The building now looks completely different, and Crystal is looking forward to hearing families in the store having a good time and playing the games built into the tables.
If opening day was any indication, Carlisle is more than ready for the new addition. A post on the Dough & Arrows Facebook page said visitors ate 345 pounds of ice cream and 440 pounds of cookie dough that day.
It’s the second location for Dough & Arrows. They bought their first location in Hanover just before the pandemic in January 2020.
Across the street and down the block at 20 N. Hanover St., Playa Bowls opened their doors Aug. 14 to long lines waiting for their first taste of a first of its kind restaurant in downtown Carlisle. Owner Brooke Butler Wagner bought the former Wardecker’s Menswear building and transformed the former shop area into a restaurant with a distinctive beach theme.
The menu includes the Playa Bowls signature dish, a blended acai base, layered with granola, fresh fruit and a drizzle of Nutella, honey or peanut butter topped with shaved coconut, alongside other offerings such as oatmeal, smoothies and juices.
Tawan Authentic Thai Restaurant
Tawan Authentic Thai Restaurant brings Thai cuisine back to downtown Carlisle at 141 W. High St., which had previously been home to other Thai restaurants since Amy Fulton established Amy’s Thai Cuisine in the space in the late 1990s.
Tawan opened Sept. 2 and offers authentic Thai dishes prepared by a professional chef with 10 years of experience in cooking Thai food, according to the restaurant’s website.
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“I’m making it a way to introduce my culture to Carlisle which has given so much opportunity."
— Bryan Landers