Dolce Vita Café in Yorktown Heights (1877 Commerce St; 914.505.0305) is the new sweet shop in town, bringing together family through coffee and pastries — directly imported from Italy.
Husband-wife team Marsel and Anduela Prela opened the café in May, despite having had no prior industry experience. Marsel, who owns a Yorktown-based construction company, grew up in Italy, having lived in Sicily, Florence, and Milan, after moving from his and Anduela’s native Albania. Anduela is a math teacher in the Bronx who has a background in economics and finance.
The Yorktown Heights residents wanted to create a place where the whole family could gather. “We had this idea of opening up a small European-style café where people can come and sit and enjoy the sweets and the drinks after dinner or in the afternoon, kind of like it is in Europe,” explains Anduela. “Here, the culture is more fast-paced, like grab something and go. We wanted to do a more relaxing atmosphere.”
Dolce Vita offers desserts by esteemed Italian distributor Bindi. Cappuccino and fresh cakes are the most popular (“Everybody loves our cappuccinos,” says Anduela), as is the gelato, since, Anduela explains, there is currently no gelato place in Yorktown.
The gelato flavors include coffee, dulce de leche, strawberry, and coconut. Other sweets include sorbetto and the torta nocciola and cannoli cakes. “Dolce Vita is where parents can come, hang out, and have a coffee, and kids can have their gelato. It’s a place for everyone.”