Kickstarter Campaign Aims to Get Friend Back in the Restaurant Biz

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"Many of you know and love Ehab Enaia and his former place, Cafe Falafel," says Diane Sikorski, who many know as the gal behind Humble Pie Baking. "When he made the decision to close the cafe last year, I knew I wanted to do something to help him reopen in a new location. This Kickstarter campaign is the result of that desire."

The moving short video (from Cleveland's Purple Films) tells the story of Enaia's journey from war-torn Palestine to America and, eventually, to Café Falafel, which he opened in 2012. That lovely little shop in Kamm's Corners served traditional Middle-Eastern foods like tabbouleh, shish kabobs and some of the best falafel this side of the Nile. But more than just a source of great food, the shop became a gathering space for the community.

"Something unusual was going on at Café Falafel," Sikorski adds. "An Arab chef was breaking social and racial barriers through food. Whether Jewish, Muslim, Christian, Atheist, rich or poor, it didn't matter to Ehab. His passion for feeding people was powerful."

The small restaurant footprint, loss of parking and welcome news of a new child compelled Enaia to make a difficult decision. To the disappointment of his friends and fans, he shuttered his shop after four good years. It was only at the urging of his friends that the dream not be permanently put to bed.

"Café Falafel was a testament to Ehab and his personality and the way that he brings people together. His character is precisely what made his restaurant so magical," says Sikorski. "On the surface, this campaign is about raising money for Ehab to start a new restaurant, but to me, it has become more than that. We are people who hold open the door for people who come after us. We believe in building a bigger table and that sharing good food and time together brings people together in a meaningful way."

Give it a look and consider the cause:




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