We are Troop. In Feb 2017, Revival Brewery Owner and Operator Sean Larkin was approached by Armory properties about an upcoming vacancy at 60 Valley St in Providence. Laughing Gorilla Catering at the time consisted of Sean, Leigh Vincola, and Jason Timothy aka JT. JT was LG’s executive chef and Leigh was co-owner handling the business details and planning. LG had been running a successful catering company for over a year and were recently wrapping up their 6-month pop-up restaurant at Kitchen of which a great buzz was generated and left people wondering – what was next for LG?
In parallel, Sean and Chris Simonelli had been leisurely brainstorming
bar and restaurant concepts and trying to dream up ideas that would be a good fit for RI and specifically Providence. Chris is long time Providence resident and a Director at a local technology company in Providence. Through this outlet Chris has traveled to over 25+ countries which opened his eyes to many great and unique restaurants around the globe. Sean and Chris often spent time discussing what is lacking in Providence and how they could create something new and exciting for the city. Some of these best discussions were held on the beaches of Costa Rica. Sean saw an opportunity here to pull LG and Chris together to see if a synergy could unfold that might work for 60 Valley St.
Then there is Amar Kapadia. Amar is our numbers guy. He's mostly a silent partner to the outside world but you will definitely see him around the restaurant whenever possible...mostly during brunch! He's typically crunching numbers and making money moves early morning or in between his kids soccer games. An RI native, he lives in Lincoln with his wife, two kids, and Marley their black lab. Amar has a B.S. in ChemE from URI. Beyond Troop, Amar works with Brewing equipment which ties into his role at Revival Brewing Co. Amar has been friends with Sean for over 20 years and he and Chris are childhood best friends and have been "partners-in-crime" ever since.....it only felt right for Amar to be on the team.
Together with JT’s culinary skills and industry experience, Sean’s industry and operating skills, Amar's mathing, Leigh’s planning and marketing proficiencies paired with Chris’s business and technical skills - the dream team was now established! After months of internal discussions as well as negotiations with landlords, various Banks, lawyers, etc, the newly established team decided to move forward! Laughing Gorilla had now expanded and a pack of Gorillas is often called a "Troop".
The idea behind Troop was to create an innovative, lively, inviting, and unique experience like no other that existed in Providence. Troop wanted to listen to our neighbors, friends, and residents of the West Side to see what it is that they are looking for and how we could provide such demands in our own unique style. We knew what was important to us – great food, great drinks, cool vibe, casual neighborhood atmosphere and most importantly serving the local residents and businesses while also attracting new visitors to this historic West Side neighborhood.