Downtown Raleigh will get a new cafe and deli later this year but it will have a familiar face behind the counter.
David Fowle, who operated Cafe Udine at two different downtown locations from 1994 to 2002, is returning.
Fowle plans to open an establishment by the end of the year in the 223 S. Wilmington building next to the Busy Bee Cafe.
(It's the empty building with "House of Style" on the awning.)
He hasn't settled on a name yet, but Fowle said it will serve plenty of good coffee, lots of bacon in the morning and sandwiches for lunch.
"We have kicked the tires for about two years all over trying to find a good spot," Fowle, 47, said. "I am thrilled to get going again. Downtown's a completely different animal than it was."
Cafe Udine started out in the Two Hanover Square building and later moved to the Sheraton hotel. Since closing Udine in 2002 Fowle has continued to work at different cafes, delis and for caterers.
Fowle is negotiating with the city to have an exit on the north side of the new location with a small patio encased by windows that would look out onto the bus terminal's courtyard.
Both Busy Bee and the bar Slim's have similar deals with the city that allow them to exit the rear of their buildings.
"I hope that were going to be able to add some life to that alley way," Fowle said.
Carter Worthy Commercial is the developer on the project. It includes a restoration of the 6,500-square-foot building's facade.
Fowle's cafe will give downtown workers and visitors yet another coffee option, joining The Morning Times, Port City Java, Cafe Sosta, Crema on Fayetteville Street and Starbucks.
"I've been doing coffee for 15 years and love it," Fowle said. "I consider myself pretty good at it."