- MELISSA PASANEN ©️ Seven Days
- Trevor Sullivan and Lisa Bergström sitting on the truck that will become the New North End Pingala coffee bar
Pingala's new spot is next door to Volcano Asian Cuisine in the building at 1353-1355 North Avenue. The couple hopes to open the café in late April or May. They are in the process of gutting and renovating the 3,000-square-foot space, which will also serve as a commissary kitchen for their Broccoli Bar food truck and help them expand production and retail sales of their vegan comfort-food menu.
Since 2014, Pingala's original Burlington location in the Chace Mill has served up vegan offerings such as Mac and Cheeze and veggie fresh rolls with peanut sauce. During the outdoor eating season, the Broccoli Bar travels with a globally inspired, broccoli-centric menu that delivers a kaleidoscope of flavors and textures.
- Broccoli Bar offering
In October 2020, Bergström, Sullivan and a New York-based business partner opened a brick-and-mortar version of Broccoli Bar in Brooklyn. It closed in January 2022, and Bergström and Sullivan decided to refocus closer to home.
The North Avenue Pingala will duplicate the brightly muraled decor and the counter-service model of the Chace Mill location. Many of the fixtures are salvaged, the couple said, including the front end of a 1968 GMC truck that will become the restaurant's coffee bar.
In addition to its food menu, coffee, tea and smoothies, the café will have a vegan creemee machine and laptop plug-in stations. The goal is to make it a neighborhood hang-out spot, the couple said.
The new location will also produce and package sauces, pickles, vegan cheeses and some Pingala menu favorites, including smoked carrot dogs and N'avocado spread. These items will be for sale at the small on-site market, which will also carry some local produce and other vegan foods. The Pingala team is developing meal kits and planning some lunch catering.
"It feels great that we're doing something in our neighborhood that is actually going to impact the food scene and complement what's out here," Sullivan said.