Accordion music wafts through the afternoon sun, people relax outside at small street side tables smiling, sipping on café au laits and chatting with each other. The all girl staff (minus the dish washer) brings plates of food and beverages with a bounce in their step and sparkle in there eyes. This is the Bahamas village and this is the La Creperie.
Located on the corner of Petronia and Thomas this local gem has brought a European vibe to the already eclectic mix of the neighborhood. It’s been a long journey for owners Yolande Findlay and Sylvie Le Nouail to enter in to this perfect mix, but as they say it’s about the journey and not he final destination that makes you who you are.
Co owner and operator Yolande Findlay tells the story of how they came to the island.
“I came to Key West in 1982 and opened croissants de France in 1984 with Claude Lucas. We sold it in 2004 and I stayed on until 2007. After we sold, Sylvie who was one of the employees at the restaurant and I bought a creperie cart and we did festivals like Goombay and Fantasy Fest. It worked so well that we always imagined the cart in a window to sell the crepees. A spot became opened on Duval Street and we took it and that was in 2003. Then in March 2009 there was a big fire and everything perished. We took the summer off and then we found this location here in Bahamas village and here we are.”
With a move comes change but some things always stay the same. “Things are a little different since moving, our clientele has changed a little; now, we have seating, we have a huge following from Duval Street,” says Yolande. “People are still finding us every day. We have great locals that love us and we have a lot of over flow from Blue Heaven.”
Yolande explains exactly what a crepe is.
“Its funny,” she says, “some people don’t know what a crepe is. They ask me what a crepe is. I laugh and explain it to them. A crepe is a specialty from Brittany on the west coast of France. You have two kinds of crepes, the savory galettes that is made from Buckwheat and water and the sweet creeper witch is made from flour, eggs milk and sugar. Our most popular crepes would be for breakfast the prosciutto, eggs, cheese with province tomatoes for breakfast. A lot of people love the veggie crepe for the vegan and vegetarian people that come here for the sweet ones they all sell. The banana lime sugar is very popular and the Red Velvet one is of our specialties and that is a mix of both the savory and sweet. What we do here is the real thing. We also do other things like panninis, onion soup, cheese plates, wonderful salads and French omelets.”
With its European decor, French windows, and outdoor seating its hard not to fee like you are in another country.
“The color of this building was very appealing. I liked a lot. It has a very European feel.
I think the porch is everything; sitting under it feels very nice. We also wanted to replicate our take out window from Duval Street for people used to the takeout food.”
The window stays busy the entire time La Crepere is open. Coffees, teas, and mimosas flow out to those waiting for a seat. There’s a bar inside as well to seat the many people who just stop by to have a quick cup and chat with the staff. It feels like your visiting an old friend. There is never a rush and you never feel unwelcome.
La Creperie is one of these rare places that make you slow down for a minute sip your drink, slowly eat your food, listen to the music and appreciate the moment. Take the time to visit the girls at La Creperie; the destination is absolutely worth the journey.
La Creperie is open from 730am – 4pm during the summer. It is located at 300 Petronia right at the corner of Thomas and Petronia.