Café Komma Rosta, in Verdun, won the prize in the “Restaurants and bars” category at the UNIO gala on May 17, organized by the Montreal Center South West Chamber of Commerce. The most promising and inspiring businesses in southwest Montreal were honored during this evening, which brought together nearly 300 guests.
This is great recognition from the community for the little café that opened on Wellington Street two and a half years ago. In addition to the trophy, the Komma Rosta walked away with a $5,000 purse.
In interview with Subwaythe co-owner of the establishment, Dave Côté, was stamping his feet with joy.
“It made us realize that starting our first company is not nothing and we did it! We did it well too! To be able to have this recognition from the business community, it touched us deeply and it is also a great boost for the future, ”drops Mr. Côté.
The Komma Rosta was also among the finalists for the “Turn green tomorrow” award at the UNIO gala. This distinction encourages companies to innovate and to implement an environmental component in their business plan, in particular.
“It is something that particularly affects us. We salute our friends from the Café on the 5the who have a similar mission. We compost, we sell our coffee beans in bulk, we source our coffee in the most responsible way possible, we have second-hand furniture, we use the circular economy in our kitchen. We know that we don’t have the miracle solution, but we can’t do it,” explains Dave Côté.
The Komma Rosta is the fruit of the meeting between Dave Côté and Elena Matsuo. The two are business partners, and partners in life. The couple have lived in Verdun for a few years and the idea of opening a café has started to mature over time.
“Elena is half Japanese, half Canadian. When I met her 10 years ago, I said to her: “But Elena, what I eat with your father and you… how come we don’t see that in Montreal?” recalls Dave Côté.
On site, they serve onigiri (stuffed rice triangles), dashi (homemade Japanese broth), hiyashichuka (ramen salad) and hiyashiudon (cold udon soup), in particular.
“It’s simple, worked, tasty and fresh,” proclaims the co-owner of Komma Rosta. Dave Côté considers the nature of the concept to be the main attraction of his business.
“We ourselves had to fight to explain what we were going to do. Japanese cuisine with roasting? People weren’t sure at first, but then two and a half years later, people are like, “Wow! They see the amalgam that we wanted to create, ”he continues.
“Feel at home”
Beyond the coffee and culinary offer, it is the friendly and welcoming side that stands out from our visit to Komma Rosta.
“Our primary value is accessibility. We created a common place, where anyone can come and feel at home,” says Dave Côté.
The café sporadically hosts concerts, launches or workshops. The two co-owners, who are young parents, have created a so-called space for young families.
“On a parent-child space, because we realized that it was lacking in Verdun. We must allow everyone, without exception, to enjoy our coffee,” concluded Mr. Côté.