“Café the Lodge is thrilled to be Fig’s Social Mission Partner of 2019,” said Ian Panyko, Director at Café the Lodge. “We are looking forward to showing the valley that the employees of Café the Lodge are the faces of mental health recovery!”
CafeThe Lodge offers fresh Bistro style food and dine in seating at their location on Fourth Street in Bethlehem. Here Chef Allen Singer holds a Cuban Sandwich,left, featuring sliced ham, pulled pork, a dill pickle, Swiss cheese, and garlic aioli, with potato salad on the side and a Broccoli Cheddar Quiche with a harvest salad which features baby greens, apples, dried cranberries,walnuts,and red onion with a raspberry vinaigrette, on the right.
Cafe The Lodge in Bethlehem is a full-service cafe that employs people in recovery from mental health challenges. Clients prepare and serve quality coffee, tea, pastries and wholesome breakfasts and lunches in an environment that affirms self-determination and supports people who express a desire to work at jobs that make them feel productive and part of the community.
We take a tour through a local neighborhood to find out what's made in South Bethlehem. Orasure is a leading manufacturer of tests to diagnose HIV and Ebola; Engineers design products for Texas instruments and Cafe Lodge doesn't just make good food, they make good jobs for people who may not have them otherwise.
Opened in March 2012 with an official grand opening held Jan. 11, 2013, the Lodge is open to the public with easy access through a gate off the South Bethlehem Greenway. Located in the former Connell Funeral Home, Café the Lodge's backyard with its benches and goldfish pond welcomes anyone seeking relaxation in a peaceful setting. Where friends celebrate greatness in self and others.
Lehigh Valley resident Hong Tatt Foo has provided a reproduction of one of his paintings to be used as a mural in the garden of Cafe the Lodge in south Bethlehem. The mural is intended to highlight the importance of education and to increase awareness of the many places in the world where people are denied access to education.
"Our mission is to take away the stigma," says Aaik Van Munster, program director of the Lodge. What makes Cafe the Lodge unique as a business is its dedication to providing work (and a sense of purpose) for those with mental illness.
While the cafe has a clear mission, it is also a business. "We are here to attract a customer base," Van Munster says. "The coffee is great. The Cuban sandwich is great.
Singer, who was the head chef at Susan's Catering where he worked for 16 years, brought his wealth of culinary experience to the cafe. He created the menu (good food made simply and freshly) and trained the staff.
For the first time ever, 9-year-old Owen Annicchiarico took to Café the Lodge's Open Mic stage to sing two children's classics. With focus and stage presence, Owen sang with no musical accompaniment and only minimal cues from his Dad's tablet with the song lyrics.
Courtney Annicchiarico, Owen's proud mom, says this is a wonderful change from a year ago, when Owen, who is diagnosed as high-functioning on the autism spectrum, could not even sit and listen to a performance without getting visibly upset.
Cafe The Lodge received the Most Original Soup Award, Saturday January 28, 2017 at the 8th annual Souper Bowl for Chef Allen's Creamy Pumpkin & Chorizo Soup.
The Lodge received the RHD Community Service Award. At the Resources for Human Development 22nd Annual Values Celebration "Making a Impact"! People from 13 states celebrating the accomplishments, hard work and dedication to uplift and educate the communities we serve!
Cafe the Lodge received a 2014 “Tribute to the Arts Award” from the Bethlehem Fine Arts Commission, recognizing the Lodge’s contributions to the arts. The “Tribute to the Arts Awards” was instituted in 1991 and continues on a yearly basis to honor individuals, organizations, educators, innovators or businesses that are engaged in making, supporting or encouraging artistic endeavors that enrich the community