In August 2017, the owners announced that they had six months left on their lease because the building at 77-02 Roosevelt Ave. would be demolished. The developer will turn the two-story structure into a seven-story, mixed-use building.
Though Arepa Lady found another location on 79th Street, owners could not come to an agreement with the landlord. Since the building also housed a Starbucks, the restaurant would not be allowed to sell coffee.
But on Feb. 12, the restaurant announced on Twitter that they would move into a building at 77-17 37th Ave., which used to house City Coffee. It’s located one avenue away from the current location and owners plan on opening the new site “as soon as possible.”
Sadly our Roosevelt location will be closing soon , but we have found a new home down the block.
We will be working day and night to be able to open as soon as possible. pic.twitter.com/cjmEt3bdQw
— arepalady (@Arepalady) February 12, 2018
The eatery started as a food truck at 79th Street and Roosevelt Avenue by Colombian immigrant Maria Cano in the ’90s. In 2014, Cano and her son opened a brick-and-mortar store in 77-02 Roosevelt Ave. In addition to arepas, the eatery serves dishes such as chicharron patacones (fried plantains with pork belly), chuzo (meat skewer) dishes and desserts like flan and tres leche cake.
Cano was a judge in Medellin, Colombia but fled the country with her family in the ’80s due to the drug war, Grub Street reported. Her food cart gained notoriety and became popular within the borough and across the city, which allowed her to open a shop with her family. Arepa Lady also operates out of Brooklyn’s DeKalb Market Hall.
Cano hasn’t operated the food truck since last year, according to Grub Street and her son Alejandro Osorio, has taken over operations.