February 01, 2012

The Crêperie

The Crêperie
111-10220 103 Street NW
Edmonton, AB T5J 4C9
(780) 420-6656
When I'd visited Edmonton previously as a tourist, The Crêperie was always recommended as a place to eat. It's in an accessible and visible location on restaurant row of the Revillon Boardwalk, and since opening in 1976 has become a tradition to many Edmontonians I've spoken with.  We entered the restaurant from the street level, and head down a small set of stairs where we met our hostess. Being in a lower level, surrounded by cement gives the feeling of an old cellar, but brightened up with floral patterns and decent lighting. It was Friday night and, although not packed, the place was busy and we were glad we'd been organized enough to make a reservation.

Croustilles au fromage
The croustilles au fromage (translation: cheese chips) are cheese crepes, sliced into chip-size pieces and deep-fried. They arrived warm, seasoned with salt, and were served with a mildly garlicky yogurt dip. Some of our chips must have been stuck together before entering the fryer, as they were clumped and still soft like a regular crepe. My friend and I agreed that we actually preferred these to the the regular crunchy ones! The dip was a nice addition, and helped mellow out the saltiness of the chips. They are addictive, but the portion was so generous that between the two of us we only made it through half of the small order.

After we placed our order for entrees, our waiter brought out some bread. It was slightly warm, soft on the inside, and not too crusty. It was served with a tasty garlic butter, though I'm sure regular butter is available if requested.

Crepe Florentine with orzo, vegetables, and my shadow
Most of their savory crepes are topped with hollandaise, I can't comment on it as both our choices were those topped with a mozzarella cheese blend. The crepe Florentine, filled with creamed spinach and mushrooms, was on the bland side for my friend. She loaded it it up with black pepper for seasoning. The orzo was pleasant, but again, not particularly interesting.

Crepe asparagus
My crepe asparagus was filled with lots of asparagus and brie and baked with the mozzarella cheese blend. The texture of the crepe was soft but slightly chewy -- a lot like I had in France. It was hearty and the asparagus contributed some flavor, but like my friend I felt it was missing some basic seasoning.
Fruit salad
I decided to forgo the sides and pay an extra $3 for a fruit salad, and after tasting the orzo and vegetables, I was glad I did. The fruit was fresh, and the honey-lime dip it came with was actually really delicious.

Crepe aux pommes
We couldn't leave without trying a dessert crepe, could we? The crepe aux pommes immediately stood out on the menu. It came filled with baked apples, brown sugar, and streusel and was served with vanilla ice cream and whipped cream. The baked apples were a nice change from the apple pie filling you find at many crepe outlets, but I would have preferred it to come out warmer, so I could have melted some of my ice cream over top of it. We ate the dish and enjoyed it, but it was far from mind-blowing.

We liked the cellar-like setting of The Crêperie and the service we received was attentive and friendly; however, for the price, we felt much of the food lacked a certain je ne sais quoi. You will go home full, but probably not entirely satisfied. While French cooking is famous for its buttery, creamy dishes, it also employs fresh herbs, spices, and seasoning to lend aroma, brightness, and flavor to even the heaviest of dishes. The dishes at The Crêperie emphasize richness over flavor, but the two are not, and should not be treated as mutually exclusive.

Restaurant website
The Creperie on Urbanspoon

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