Editor’s Note: This is part of a series on the new faces of business in Chelmsford, Westford and Littleton.
WESTFORD – For many years Village Breakfast served as a gathering place for meals, coffee and conversation.
New owners Ender and Fatma Ozgur are committed to honoring the tradition – including black and white photos on the wall, which guests thank them for keeping as they remember precious moments.
“I didn’t want to take that away from people… there’s a big story, and I respect that,” Ender said.
But the Ozgurs inject a contemporary twist, with organic coffee, vegan and gluten-free pastries, cold-pressed juices, organic fruit smoothies, savory soups, and more.
They also bring the flavors of their own experiences and travels.
Now living in New Hampshire, they have their roots in a town near Ankara, the capital of Turkey, where Fatma studied and worked in the culinary industry. Ender learned the delights of good food starting with his family’s garden.
Ender recently spoke about the challenges of a family business and his vision for a beloved restaurant with a sense of community.
When did you take possession of Village Breakfast?
It was a breakfast spot for 50 years, and for a few months before we had it, before the pandemic, they shut down. We took it over in June and it opened on June 10th.
What kind of food and drink do you serve?
We mainly serve breakfast. We have regular omelets, eggs and cheese on a bagel.
Also, vegan, organic and gluten-free breakfasts and lunches. From next week we will add the soft-serve [frozen] yogurt.
We’re supposed to have the best coffee in town. This is what we are aiming for.
What are some of your gluten-free and vegan options?
We have gluten free and vegan pastries and smoothies. The pastries come from a bakery in New York. Some we cook here, and some are already cooked. We have seven different kinds of gluten free muffins. We also have bread rolls, cakes and cakes.
Was it difficult to get started during the pandemic?
Of course, it is hard. It’s just me and my wife at the moment. It’s not easy, but we’re working hard… people are reacting really well, it’s going to take a little while, but you know, we’re going to get there.
Our owner is very kind and reasonable to us.
More in this series
We have three small children – 7, 9 and 11 years old. They work here on the weekends … on the weekends we are a little busy, and they help us.
How long have you been in the food business?
All my life. I’m from Turkey, I’ve been in the US since 1993. I grew up on a farm, and until I was 12 I didn’t know there was a supermarket. I thought everyone had a garden.
I came to this country, and since learning about fruits and vegetables, in 1994, I opened a fruit and vegetable stand in Brooklyn, New York. All my life I have worked in the fruit and vegetable business – growing vegetables, chopping them.
Do you have any traditional Turkish items?
We all have the traditional baklava, which comes from Turkey. I have two different kinds, pistachio and walnut. People are now starting to come for baklava and coffee.
What is your greatest hope for this business?
Making good food available and affordable is my goal. I want people to understand now that I am going to give them a choice. Eating great food is actually affordable.
8 Prescott Street West, Westford
6:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday to Sunday
Receive updates and more – sign up for our newsletter here.