The Funky Ladles soup and sandwich shop in downtown has changed hands and is expected to reopen under a new name with expanded offerings in May.
The 135 E. Erie St. shop was the first of Acorn Alley II business when it opened in October 2011 as Zoupwerks before changing names.
But, family illness has caused Randy Durant, the shop's founder, to refocus his priorities, said Michelle Hartman, vice-president of Phoenix Properties, the firm that oversees the Acorn Alley developments.
"It just made good sense for him to do this because he was needed elsewhere," Hartman said.
On March 18, Funky Ladles officially transferred to Mike Awad, owner of the Main Street Continental Grill and Laziza restaurants.
Awad said he plans to keep the soups Funky Ladles offered, including the popular "Lobstah" Bisque, but is changing the name to Rise and Shine Cafe, with an expanded menu including a full breakfast, more sandwiches, wraps and specials. He projects a grand re-opening date of May 1.
Rise and Shine Cafe will feature a redone interior, and offer omelette and waffle bars, pancakes and more for breakfast.
"We'll roll into lunches with the soups, healthy sandwiches and wraps, and have your good old mom's meatloaf special or something like that," Awad said, adding that business hours aren't yet set in stone, but the cafe will open around 6 or 7 a.m. and close after late lunch hours. "We're going to stay with very healthy ingredients -- low-fat, low-sodium."
Rise and Shine Cafe will add a few soups to the menu, focusing on hot soups in the winter, and adding cold soups during the summertime, Awad said.
"I've been really excited about the concept from day one," he said.
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