ELMHURST — The owners of a funky Thai bar on Woodside Avenue have expanded across Queens Boulevard with a coffee and tea shop meant to look like a treehouse, serving up specialty bubble teas and coffees.
Pata Cafe opened last month at 56-14 Van Horn St. in Elmhurst — an offshoot of the popular Pata Paplean bar that opened in 2013.
Although it's street level on a mostly residential block with a handful of businesses, there are thick tree branches that reach to the ceiling and multi-colored chunks of wood throughout.
"It's decorated to look like a treehouse," Nitmai, 34, said.
The name Pata comes from a department store in Bangkok with a gorilla on the roof and a zoo on two floors.
To honor that, a stuffed monkey toy hangs from a tree near the small kitchen area.
The menu includes lattes, hot tea and cold drinks.
Their specialty is a Thai-style bubble tea, made with the orange-hued tea popular throughout Thailand instead of the more common Taiwanese black tea, according to Chompoo Nitmai, a partner in the restaurant.
"We just want to make something different," she said.
While they originally planned to only sell drinks and pastries, neighbors started asking for more food options. So they've added sandwiches, crepes, and rice to a rotating menu.
Their bubble tea menu has been popular with kids from the nearby elementary school, and they're continuing to experiment with different flavors and mixes.
"It gets crazy after school," she said.
Pata Cafe is open seven days a week, from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m.