Crêpes are a classic but a bit of an under-the-radar trend. Perhaps because of this, crepêries pop up frequently but also go under with an unfortunate regularity. Café Triskell has weathered a few years in Astoria, thanks undoubtedly to chef Phillipe Fallait, formerly of Vong and Jean-Georges, who has a sublime way with the crêpes of his native Brittany.
Brittany’s unique gastronomy, drawing on its Celtic origins and its later French influences, comes to life in the bijoux, sunny interior of Café Triskell. Four tables and a counter with a kitchen view are filled with the full gamut of locals – the long-timers, the recent artsy/international crowd and the inhabitants of the million-dollar condos. The one thing that they all have in common is that they’re there for the crêpes.
Thin, crisp and nutty, they’re made of buckwheat and delicately envelope their spare, savory contents. You can choose from classics such as ham and swiss, vegetarian-friendly options that feature excellent, bright-tasting herb butter and more uncommon combinations like seared diver scallops in cider sauce with mushrooms. If the 10 crêpes on the menu aren’t what you’re in the mood for, you can create your own variety with any three ingredients of your choosing. Or take advantage of the sandwiches (croque for monsieur et madame, along with a turkey and cranberry sandwich to make Thanksgiving dinner jealous) and entrees (mussels, short ribs, scallops and crab cakes).
Dessert crêpes range from simple to over-the-top. For light but delectable, there’s butter and sugar, cinnamon and sugar and lemon and sugar. The poached pear with chocolate, almonds and whipped cream arrives as a plate-stretching cylinder plump with pears that still have bite to them and aren‘t desecrated by the addition of sugar.
Two standout beverages to accompany your meal are the homemade hot apple cider, a tradition in Brittany, and a frappe that, if you’re lucky, will be made for you by the Greek waitress who’ll vouch for its authenticity.
33-04 36th Ave.
Astoria, NY 11106