Cooking for others brings Angelina Maholias back to her roots. Sundays were always at her grandmother’s for family meals. Learning from her father, she grew up working in his clubs and restaurants. He owned a number of them over the years, including The Attic in the original location on Second Street. She experienced memorable shows and perfecting the art of interacting with anyone.
Wanting to make her own mark, Maholias opened Tropical Pollo on National Ave. in the ’90s, later moving to a space on Sixth and Rogers. That’s long gone, but she’s still cooking.
In 2014, she opened Little Havana Express food truck. That’s often booked out a year in advance. After growing a following, she hunted for a space that was the right size and could fit her budget. She landed in Franklin, signed her lease Jan. 1, 2020, and worked on renovating the kitchen. When the pandemic shut things down, she was forced to postpone opening. Havana Cafe, 7119 S. 76th St., Franklin, officially opened its doors in September 2020.