Category Archives: crepes

The Greatest Crepe: Five Fantastic Brooklyn Crepe Makers

Nothing like a great crepe to warm you in the Winter. It’s almost therapeutic to watch a crepe artist do their handywork. And you’ll forget all about the cold when you, before your first bite, admire the neat, tidy bits of cream and strawberries peeping out of tanned, toasty and crisp folds of a crepe. Any of these five creperies will give you an engaging and memorable dining experience.    

Eight Turn Crepe  I went to this busy location in Dekalb Market and loved it. Every time I think of my savory shrimp and avo crepe turned ‘round and ‘round eight times—hence ETC’s name—I want to go back for it, and to try more. Eight Turn Crepe’s Japanese rice crepes menu is extensive, so it took me a while to order. Once I finally ordered, service was timely and effective. Not lightning fast but certainly not slow either. 

Usually, I like to take food to go, but my son’s affection for eating food right away won on this occasion for two reasons. Crepes have a strict no-travel policy—you must eat them ASAP—that if contested, the crepes will turn soggy in half an hour or less. 

I found myself trying to relax, as much as possible, in noisy and so-not-comfy Dekalb market. But the thought of a totally not crispy crepe was almost painful.

My mouth was literally watering as I watched other patrons pick up their orders. Finally, it came to me. And it was ridiculously beautiful, crispy edged, mouthwatering and a lot tastier than I’d hoped. 

Cloud 9 Crepes  A cute and quaint spot with lust-able rice crepes that made me walk to the other side of Bed-Stuy on a sunny but cold afternoon. Buses are not convenient during the day. But I was on a mission and no amount of inconvenience could stop my crepe craving, so I made it there and back in record time: about two hours. The longest time ever. 

By the time I inhaled it, my chicken salad crepe was of course soggy but still flavorful with Dijon mustard dressing. Sogginess aside, I could tell by the thickness of the crepe that it was a bit different from what I’m used to and what I prefer in a crepe.

Cloud 9’s space is sugary sweet though. What an adorable, child-friendly space for a friends’ get-together. 

Lakou Café  Three words, curry chickpea crepe, lingered in my mind for days till I finally ordered it for lunch. Not only did this wow-worthy vegetarian crepe exceed my expectations, it also destroyed any meat protein cravings for the rest of the day. Moments like these reaffirm my belief that Brooklyn is home to some of the best dining in the world. 

Lakou’s distinctive Haitian menu is a cool mix of classic French fare with adventurous Caribbean highlights. The Jerk Jackfruit crepe is on my long list of next times from local restaurants. “Next time, I’ll try this … next time I’ll try that.” 

By the way Lakou Café is the second Haitian resto this month that has blown me away with its undeniable flavor. And more Haitian restaurants are popping up. I see a guide to Brooklyn’s best Haitian cuisine on the horizon. It’s too spectacular to be overlooked.

Madame Poupon  Picture it! Valentine’s day 2020. You and your honey meet here at this authentic and intimate French restaurant. There’s candlelight, red roses and soft French music playing in the background. You find yourself sharing first, the vegetarian crepe, then second, the Daoulas crepe—fresh strawberries, chocolate ganache, vanilla whipped cream and black pepper—by taking turns to feed each other. What a perfect night for love. 

I hope to visit Madame Poupon sooner than Valentine’s Day next year, especially since it’s very conveniently located for me. But if I don’t make it there sooner then, it will skyrocket to the top of my list. The Daoulas crepe is one of a few sweet crepes that I’d like to try. Looks like dessert is the winner at Madame Poupon.

Take a Break and I’ll Bake Café & Creperie  Southern-French is always a favorite of mine. Cajun and Louisiana Creole cooking comes to mind. But Take a Break and I’ll Bake Café is about a fusion of American southern and European (French and Italian) cuisine. 

The decadent Peaches & Cream (Peach cobbler filling), and the Campfire (rich dark chocolate, marshmallows and graham crackers) crepes seem promising.  

Lead Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash

Five Minutes with a Carrot Crêpe

Certain moments are better experienced as a party of one: like buying your first pair of $300 vintage-style shoes—you should probably avoid sharing the deets of where you bought them or the price you paid for them—or like savoring Olmsted’s phenomenal carrot crêpe. Trust me, you don’t want to share it, period.

Thinly shredded carrots, radicchio, micro greens, and sunflower seeds crown this veggie and clam-filled crêpe, with a vivid freshness that spells out farm to table—in case you didn’t know what Olmsted is all about.

Even before Olmsted came up in my search results for BK restaurants that serve Chawanmushi, I’d bookmarked it, but I had no idea of what this Michelin-starred resto was capable of producing.

Now, though I have a short list:
  1. A carrot crêpe that tastes so much better than I expected, probably the best new thing I’ve tried this year;
  2. High-quality veggies, meat and fish served in a very green, minimalist space with upscale touches. I sat at the white marble bar;
  3. A very good reason why my six-year-old’s philosophy of “Sharing is not caring” applies sometimes;
  4. Big smiles for dishes laced with greens, greens and more greens, from its “green wall.”
Olmsted’s interior “green wall” of plants serves two great functions: easy access to organically grown greens for select dishes on Olmsted’s menu, and providing a Prospect Park-like ambience perfect for eating carrot crêpes.

I witnessed a married couple sitting next to me at Olmsted’s bar, share the carrot crêpe and maybe it was just my imagination, but half of the time they smiled and the other half, they frowned. The wife, sitting closest to me, whispered rave reviews for it in my ear, while mine was on its way and I could tell she was a bit jealous that I’d be having mine all to myself.

Good food usually brings people together but this carrot crêpe is not a typical savory crêpe, just as Olmsted is not your typical restaurant. It’s a future-forward, vegetarian-friendly dreams do come true restaurant with old school ideals—the type of restaurant that yields relishable, good-for-you cuisine for every category of eaters.

The crêpe’s underscore is an orange-carrot “jus” that adds a delightful citrus sweetness to every bite. I made sure to sop up as much of it as possible, as I finished my crêpe in five minutes (or less).

Olmsted
659 Vanderbilt Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11238
(718) 552-2610
http://www.olmstednyc.com

Crazy for Crêpes: Part Deux

Whether savory or sweet, crêpes are whimsical, delightful and limitless because of the opportunity to be adventurous when choosing a crêpe’s filling. The crispy, fluffy and/or puffy envelope—that would never be left unopened if it were mail—is usually made to provide the most amazing, French vehicle for cheese, meat, or my favorite crêpe filling, Nutella. Last Saturday morning , I took my son on a short crêpe tour in the often overrun with stroller traffic Park Slope and we had good experiences at all three crêpe stops on the following list. Good luck crêpe-ing (not to be confused with creeping)!

The Pleasant Pheasant 

Le French Tart should be renamed Le French Tasty Tart! In this bright, spacious and light-filled environment meant for families, the authentic Parisian cuisine that you’ll devour outshines the decor. You’ll like the Eiffel Tower candle holders and hound dog bottle openers that are for sale, but you’ll adore la poulet, the mouthwatering chicken crêpe.

The crêpe itself is a very thin, buckwheat, authentic Parisian crêpe. I didn’t mind the dark (almost burnt) areas, because the burnt taste added to the overall flavor of the crêpe. Something about a little bit of burntness says homemade—like your working mother ran home to make it for you in a rush homemade.

The filling of the crêpe—slightly overcooked grilled chicken breast, béchamel and swiss cheese—was ooey, gooey delightful to see and taste. Perfect for a rainy and unseasonably cold Saturday morning in May. It was served with a mixed salad with forgettable dressing, but I appreciated the gesture of serving a decadent crêpe with fresh veggies. How French!

Was it the French way to serve my chicken crêpe on a paper plate? I have mixed feelings: it took away from the experience of imagining that we’d traveled back to Paris to admire the beauty and taste of a great crêpe; but it also was a cleaner option than a plate they’d wash and reuse.

Either way, the decor and overall setup of Le French Tart could be greatly improved by focusing on the creation of a central space that is easily reachable from all four corners of this family-style cafe.

Le French Tart, 579 5th Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11215

https://www.yelp.com/biz/le-french-tart-brooklyn?osq=le+French+tart

The Not-So Gratifying Goat Cheese and Spinach

After the rather subdued, as subdued as a bunch of toddlers and their families can be, experience at Le French Tart, walking in or rather dancing in to Couleur Café was quite energizing, to say the least. Current R&B and pop music played at just the right volume: loud enough to hear the wonderful bass beats, but still quiet enough to be remain a special part of the background. Also, enjoyable enough to chair dance to while you eat.

While the music was enjoyable, so was Couleur Café’s mix of retro and vintage-modern aesthetics, evident in turn of the century-styled moldings on the walls, floral print cushioned chairs, and the reclaimed banisters that punctuate the turquoise counter/bar.

The crêpe was not my favorite but only due to the spinach filling. I tend to avoid cooked spinach, unless it’s cooked in cream and butter with cheese and made into a dip. The crêpe was like a biscuit or the crust of a potpie: tasty and hearty enough to hold up to a wet filling. Even with the spinach, it didn’t turn soggy on me. A smoked salmon option was available but I wasn’t in the mood for it. But next time and yes, there will be a next time for us at this unique cafe, I’ll be ordering the smoked salmon crêpe.

Couleur Café servers are friendly, if not on point. Our drinks—a well deserved mimosa and a well-done (according to my son) Shirley Temple—came to our table after our grilled cheese and crêpe orders.

With all of its misses, I’d still say Couleur Café is cooler than most cafés.

Couleur Café, 435 7th Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11215

https://www.yelp.com/biz/couleur-café-brooklyn-2?osq=cafe+couleur

Petite Sweet

Very kid-friendly. Very petite. And very appetizing Nutella crêpe. I love Nutella so I’m biased towards the entire taste of the crêpe as Nutella’s dominance of deliciousness over everything it’s paired with seduces me.

But my son noticed that the crêpe was not light, thin, or fluffy but rather densely packed down in layers, which made it difficult for him to eat. I noticed that I was chewing it for a while, but I didn’t care.

My Nutella crêpe was fancily drizzled with Nutella and powdered sugar after being folded into the classic triangular crêpe shape. Perhaps if we ate it when it was warm, it’d be easier to eat and enjoy.

Cusp Crêpe and Espresso Bar, 321 7th Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11215
https://www.yelp.com/biz/cusp-crepe-and-espresso-bar-brooklyn

Other Taste-ables (Crêpe places I’ll try, but haven’t yet.)
Eight turn Crêpe
http://www.eightturncrepe.com
A popular spot in Dekalb Market Hall, with the prettiest crêpe flower presentations—some with ice cream—you’ve ever seen.
Little Choc Apothecary

Cute, colorful and French-dressed—freedom of effortlessly combining old school elegance with youthful, cheeky charm—indoor garden seeks flavor-bound vegans that live to eat. Lots of tea, lots of smoothies and lots of green greatness await.