Food Vendor of the Week: Little Eva’s

...

Governors Island features a rotating selection of food vendors. With two food courts, located at Liggett Terrace and Kings Avenue, Governors Island showcases various cuisines all offered at reasonable prices. With the recent addition of two new beer gardens on the Island, visitor options for food and beverage continue to expand. Hear the story behind our vendors that hail from neighborhoods across New York City through our newest blog segment: Food Vendor of the Week!

Since opening to the public in 2005, Governors Island has seen a lot of changes, with the construction of a new park to a record year of visitors in 2016. One constant through the years has been Little Eva’s, a beer garden and grill that has called Governors Island home for the past seven years. Owned by Kevin and Caroline Moore, the team behind Kevin’s Red Hook in Brooklyn, Little Eva’s, named after their daughter who was two at the time of its opening, has become a beloved fixture on the island.

The year they opened, Little Eva’s was located on Picnic Point, facing the waterfront and views of the Statue of Liberty. The shack that was once Little Eva’s had no electricity or water, and Governors Island was only just starting to gain attention as a destination for New Yorkers. Any hesitation that Kevin and Caroline might have felt was soon extinguished as bicycles began to emerge into view. The passion they had for Little Eva’s was evident as they retold the story. It was a story told with continual smiles and laughs as the two veterans of Governors Island looked back on trying times. Today, the only issue Little Eva’s has is accommodating their long line of customers.

Since their relocation to Liggett Terrace, the couple has expanded Little Eva’s to include a take-out counter which serves a limited menu of food and drinks. After trying their food, it is easy to see why they have such a huge following. In addition to fruity cocktails and delectable ice pops made by Red Hook based La New Yorkina (the cucumber lime was recommended), Little Eva’s features a diverse menu that keeps up with the trends finding their way to New Yorker’s taste buds. Utilizing vegetables grown right on Governors Island by GrowNYC, whose Teaching Garden is a two minute walk from Little Eva’s, executive Chef Kevin creates a variety of salads made from the freshest ingredients. For salad lovers, there’s a feeling of immense satisfaction knowing that your food is indeed “farm to table.” As for the taste, the quinoa salad featured creamy avocado complimented by the sharp accent of goat cheese. A healthy portion of quinoa provided a filling element to the meal.

There is a difference between a job and a career. A job is something a person endures but elicits no joy from. In stark contrast, a career is driven by passion and desire to devote yourself to a profession. There is no question for Kevin and Caroline this is indeed a career. It is evident in the love they have for Little Eva’s, and the effort they put into interacting with their customers. This passion for their business is being passed on to their daughter Eva who now sells ice pops on certain weekends. While no longer little, by her own admission, it is safe to assume that Eva shares her parent’s love for Governors Island.

As Governors Island continues to grow in popularity it opens its docks to new visitors daily. People of all backgrounds have the opportunity to explore the Island. As Caroline explained, this what makes Governors Island so special. The “beauty of the island is that it is a melting pot of all kinds of people.” While enjoying the natural beauty of the island and its growing diversity, it is also comforting to know that there is a place that serves quality food and drink. Come visit and enjoy Little Eva’s!