In a quiet side street just off Highway 17 in West Ashley in a kitchen outside the back of a house, Jack Byrne is hard at work doing what he loves best, making the perfect crepe. He met his wife Rachel in Europe as they traveled around, and on that same trip they would both be inspired by the numerous crepe stands they saw in France and Belgium. The pair has been faithfully serving up crepes to Charleston locals for almost 11 years, and yet they admit they only started it as a side job to earn them a little extra money, so that they could afford to do the thing that they both loved most -- traveling. Most people just think that they work the one day on Saturday at the Marion Square Farmers Market, but they are also at the Farmers Market in Mount Pleasant on a Tuesday, and are hard at work for all the other days of the week, preparing for the markets and working at private functions too. Their retail product line them busy too, and their crepe mix has just been picked up by the Vermont Country Store and will appear in their new spring catalogue. Rachel speaks enthusiastically about the business:
In the off season we spend a lot of time going through our crepe recipes, trying out news ideas and coming up with new crepes. But even when we do that, we still have our regular customers that we know and love who week after week come back and have the same thing! We admit that it started out as a side job, but when we saw that we could work for ourselves and work our own schedule - -it really worked as we have two children too and it meant that out schedules more flexible than most, but we still work really hard. I think in the future, we'll always do the markets -- we couldn't imagine not being a part of them -- but we're definitely moving forward with our business with our retail line of products."
They've also started a new product line: Holy City Chocolate. Rachel again:
It's all things chocolate ... for this winter we have a traditional hot chocolate mix and dark chocolate peanut toffee too which is delicious.
You can catch Rachel & Jack at the Farmers Market in Marion Square on Saturdays, in Mount Pleasant on Tuesday. Or at most other local Charleston events such as the Food & Wine Festival and Spoleto. TheDigitel spotted them at the Buy Local Bazaar last week for instance, too! Their Web site is The Charleston Crepe Company. Geoff Marshall caught up with them last week -- check out the video at the top.