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Little Bird, a café from the Bluebird Cocktail Room team, to open in Hampden in August

Following the Bluebird Cocktail Room, owners Paul and Caroline Benkert will open Little Bird Coffee Bar in Hampden on Aug. 1.

Inspired by Italian cafes, Little Bird — located on the first floor of 3600 Hickory Ave., the same building as the third-floor Bluebird — will serve breakfast, lunch, light dinner and snacks daily inside the 60-seat space, Paul Benkert said.

He said the success of the Bluebird, which opened a year ago, has allowed his team to move forward with Little Bird, which will be more approachable and laid-back than the Bluebird. The space was last home to the vintage clothing store Changed My Mind, which relocated to Hampden’s 36th Street.

“I always wanted to do something a little bit more casual. … It’s not as fancy,” Paul Benkert said. “We’re so hands-on that it’s hard to be in two places at the same time. This makes it easy for us logistically.”

Little Bird’s modest menu will include rotating daily specials, and items such as homemade pastries and pasta, the semi-frozen dessert granita, espresso and more, he said. The café will also offer house-stretched mozzarella and daily delivered bread from Hyattsville’s Lyon Bakery. Annapolis’ Ceremony Coffee is Little Bird’s coffee provider.

There will also be sidewalk patio seating, along with a six-seat indoor bar made of zinc, Paul Benkert said.

Official hours for Aug. 1 are still to be finalized, but he said he expects to open at either 9 or 10 a.m. Following opening day, operating hours are 7 a.m.-9 p.m. Monday-Thursday; 7 a.m.-11 p.m. Saturday and 8 a.m.-9 p.m. Sunday.

The plan is to be more involved with the food than Bluebird, Paul Benkert said. He said he’s excited to focus on a project that more naturally fits with his personality.

“I am not exactly an upscale kind of guy. I’m really more about fresh tomatoes from the farm and making homemade ice cream and homemade pasta,” he said. “You go over your mother’s house on Sunday — that’s [the vibe] I want you to feel in the café.”


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