Crepes are coming to Baxter Avenue, and soon. Get your appetites ready.
A pair of former co-workers who worked with those who have disabilities are working double time and hoping to get their new venture, For Goodness Crepes, open by December — maybe sooner.
Abby Peak and Carrie Ramsey had talked about the possibility of doing a crepes restaurant after a snow tubing trip with friends in Cincinnati yielded a crepes restaurant they could not forget.
“It kind of went away, but it would come up every once in a while,” Peak said. “We decided at one point to see what it would really take to do it.”
That led to buying a crepe maker, testing recipes (the duo’s friends were only too happy to help), looking into the finances and, finally, creating a business plan. Figuring they might as well go all the way, they secured some financial help and advice through the Small Business Development Center, METCO, Community Ventures Corporation and SCORE, along with some help from family and their own bank accounts.
Their space at 619 Baxter Ave., which was for decades a furniture refinishing shop, came basically by accident, and the next thing they knew, they were in business. Or nearly so. With hand-painted accoutrements and furniture in the works and a fairly serious facelift going on inside, the façade and future space of For Goodness Crepes is starting to look, well, like a bona fide crepes restaurant.
“We love it,” Ramsey said. “When you walked in here, you would not have imagined what it has turned into.”
What they have in mind is a fast-casual style concept that will work similarly to a Qdoba, with a combination of specialty crepes (which are basically French-style pancakes) and you-build-it options. One of the keys is proprietary sauces they’ve created that will be highlights of offerings like a Buffalo Chicken Crepe, a Delicious Cheeseburger version, Asian Ginger and Dill Ranch. There will be a variety of meats and other ingredients.
“That’s the thing about a crepe, is you can put anything on it and it will taste good,” Peak said. “We’re also going to try to be innovative and come up with different ideas, and we’re going to serve them a little differently. We’re not going to serve them on a plate, they’re going to be in a cone.”
In other words, they’ll be hand-held crepe sandwiches, for lack of a better phrase. Peak estimates price points at around $10, depending on ingredients, for a crepe and a drink. Of course, that is a preliminary estimate, so don’t hold them to it.
There will also be salads or bowls available using the available ingredients, along with gluten-free options, as well as soups and coffee. And, since it’s a crepe restaurant, there will be dessert options as well. Pushed for a couple of examples, Peak and Ramsey offered up Cookies and Cream as well as a variety of fruits paired with a vanilla cream sauce.
“Oh, and S’mores,” Peak said. “You have to have S’mores.”
They estimate 15 or so specialty crepes plus maybe 10 dessert crepes will grace the menu for starters. On weekends, For Goodness Crepes will also be open for breakfast with breakfast/brunch-style options.
Oh, and if you’re wondering about the name, that’s more than just a pun. The word “goodness” very much comes into play. The name, they hope, reflects a positive vibe that will permeate the place.
“Everything from our name to what we want to be is a positive image,” Peak said. “Good food but also good feelings, good staff, a good place. If we can do that, then even if we go under, we’ll be happy we had an adventure.”
The plan is to do anything but “go under,” however. Both Peak and Ramsey quit their full-time jobs to focus on opening the restaurant and get it established. Once it is up and running, they may consider going back to their jobs on some level.
“We’re very scared and very excited,” Ramsey admitted.
The Highlands has no shortage of good restaurants, but a new spin on crepes? It’s a fair bet to be well received.