It’s a coffee shop! It’s a flower shop! It’s SPINA
It seems that every walk down Franklin St reveals another new business (usually a coffee shop or restaurant) in Greenpoint. Recently, SPINA, which means thorn in Italian, opened in the former location of East River Tattoo (107 Franklin St). A friend described it as a flower shop / coffee shop, which was utterly intriguing in that, “why has no one thought of that yet?” kind of way.
We all know that Greenpoint doesn’t really need any more coffee shops, just like most people don’t need another pair of shoes. But it’s nice to have options depending on your walking route. Basically you never need to go out of your way for an espresso in this town.
The floral twist makes SPINA stand out, but the kicker is that they serve Blue Bottle Coffee. And while Veronica People’s Club will always be sorely missed a few doors down for lots of other things aside from their coffee, it’s nice that nearby this new spot is picking up the caffeine slack – and I can grab a plant.
I chatted with co-owner Vanessa Chinga-Haven (left) who opened SPINA with “long time friend” and business partner Paul Diaz. SPINA started out as a floral design company. The next logical step was event planning. And while coffee might not seem like a logical step, it’s a great way to get new clients in the door.
Formerly a management consultant for a NYC wine bar, Vanessa joined Paul to help with business “restructuring.” She said she always ”dreamed of a floral coffee shop,” and her “we don’t stop” relationship with Paul made that dream come true. She described this new branch of their event planning businesses as, “completely different. We get to interact with people more often. It’s a lot of fun.”
It’s relieving to walk into a new space in Greenpoint that actually looks new and not like you entered a time machine to the 1920s. Vanessa, with the sweat equity of her husband, designed and built out the bright white space that is the perfect backdrop for gorgeous flower arrangments or just a nice spot to wake-up with a cappuccino or a donut from Dough. Yes they have donuts, too!
During the week, SPINA has more plants than flowers, but on weekends there are more cut flowers and bouquets. You can order a custom arrangement anytime in person or over the phone to be picked up or delivered – while enjoying coffee.
Have you tried SPINA yet? Let us know what you think in the comments.