Marie Laforge Shares the Story of Mango Bistro – Editor’s Note: We spoke with Marie Laforge who owns Mango Bistro with her partner Ricardo. Visit MangoBistro.com to learn more about this popular award-winning restaurant.
When did you launch your business and how has it evolved?
We launched 9 years ago as an Art gallery and smoothie bar/coffee shop featuring local artists as well as my original beach pareos and silk scarves. We were serving a limited menu of fresh items and we quickly realized that people wanted more. We had people coming every day for the first few weeks and that early interest spurred our growth and development.
How long have you lived in the area and why did you move here?
I’ve lived here 18 years and I lived in California previously. I was attracted to the lower cost of real estate and proximity to beautiful beaches and parks. It was fun and rewarding to discover what a great community Englewood is.
How did a woman from France meet a man from Brazil and how has the blending of your cultures influenced the cuisine and ambiance of Mango Bistro?
Ricardo and I met at a New Year’s Eve Party in Englewood. We were both friends with a group of people from all over the World. The combination of my French heritage, artistic background and international travel, combined with Ricardo’s colorful Brazilian upbringing and love for music have made what Mango Bistro is today.
What are some of the most popular items on your menu?
Our Rainbow Wrap with Beet Hummus, Farmer’s Market Quinoa Bowl, Soba Buddha Salad Bowl), Organic Fruit Smoothies, French Crepes, and of course our Grilled Burritos. We also offer a whole Gluten Free menu.
Who are some of your scheduled performers coming soon on Friday and Saturday evening?
Renesito Avich (Cuban/Latin), Swintide Combo (Jazz), Frost & Ross (Soulful Folk), Swinging Bridge (Bluegrass), Babyl (R’n’B, Soul, Alternative), Latin RendezVous (Rumba Flamenco and World Music).
What do you enjoy most about owning Mango Bistro and living in Englewood?
We have the most amazing and loyal customers. I love the fact that Englewood is a small community. It reminds me of the village communities in Europe. I also love the fact that a small group of locals worked together to launch the Englewood Farmers Market five years-ago.
What are some of your other passions?
I’m an artist and I have a passion for photography. I also love traveling and discovering new places and new foods. I’ve always been passionate about food; it’s an amazing creative art form that also satisfies our palate.