Café Uno continues legacy

By Elizabeth Ah-Hi ,

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COME VISIT US: Uno Ah Keni, one of the owners of Café Uno.

COME VISIT US: Uno Ah Keni, one of the owners of Café Uno. (Photo: Misiona Simo)

Café Uno in Saleufi has officially opened with a special tasting session for invited guests.

Originally an extension of Coffee Bean, the popular caravan café hangout has changed ownership with sisters’ Uno Ah-Keni and Faamati Aumua Winey who currently reside in Minnesota, U.S.A.

Known for its mixed blend expresso coffees under previous owners, Café Uno will continue to provide quality coffee especially since Mr. and Mrs. Ah Keni are both trained baristas and have a passion for coffee having worked at the Coffee Bean in previous times.

“My husband is a trained barista and he taught me how to make expresso coffee,” said Uno. 

“My husband has been working here since it was the Coffee Bean and I have come on board to support him.” 

The sisters took over the ownership and lease of the popular café on March 23, a day that holds extra significance for the sisters because it is their beloved late father’s birthday.

The passing of their dear father in 2013 changed Uno’s life in many ways, one of which led to her embracing the life of a business owner, a pathway she never imagined herself in.

Café Uno continues legacy.
Café Uno continues legacy.

Not having worked before, going from a home maker and mother, Uno admits that her new lifestyle is a shock to the system but that she is excited to work alongside her husband and that her children are a huge reason for her sudden career change. 

I love working in the café because I love being around people and making friends. That’s probably my only experience in hospitality and sales that I bring to the table because I don’t know how to cook or do anything,” she laughed. “I was just the baby Cinderella in my family who was spoilt and doted on.

“This is all for my children because before Café Uno, I never worked. I stayed home and looked after my parents and children even though I’m the youngest of my siblings, I have the most children.”

Mrs. Ah Keni says the transition to owning a business is a challenge that she is ready to embrace. She told the Samoa Observer that this is a gift from God for always having faith in Him that she and her family would be taken care of each day. 

“We never saved any money. We paid for food and school fees for our children. But for our church, my husband and I would supply the wine, the communion and the niu, so I feel like these blessings come from there.We made do and we received blessings in the form of this opportunity to run Café Uno as our own with the help of my sister.”

Café Uno is open six days a week and offers an all-day breakfast menu with hearty lunch selections that have been a hit so far with the customers. Coffee and cabinet food can be ordered to go at the front of the caravan, but customers can enjoy the outdoor eating area on the patio at the back.

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