Get your spoons ready, folks. Crackle Creme (pronounced “crack le creme”) is a tiny, 450 sqft cafe currently under construction at 245 Union St. right next door to Harvest Community Foods on the western edge of Strathcona. It will specialise in the production of five creme brûlées. We can expect three mainstays – Vanilla Bean, Bailey’s, Durian – and two on rotation – possibly White Chocolate Raspberry and Matcha to start.
It’s a one man show owned by Daniel Wong, an enterprising young man and (very) recent VCC grad. His lack of restaurant experience shouldn’t be too much of an impediment, for people who dislike creme brûlée are exceptionally rare. What’s more, the once mighty dessert seldom shows up on dessert menus any more. Perhaps it became passé on account of its ubiquity…I don’t know.
I do know, however, that creme brûlée still invites endless variation, and that there are plenty of eateries for blocks around (with more on the way) that don’t serve the blowtorched sugar discs, which is to say that many of their dessert cards might go ignored in the near future by diners who get wind of this dedicated little alternative. Perhaps creme brûlée is ripe for resurrection.
Indeed, if this is a well executed, sweeter-than-usual trace of the food truck-inspired “do one thing well and the people will come” track, then there’s a good chance that it’ll enjoy line-ups this summer. A creme brûlée cafe is certainly a clever idea, and with waffles and coffee also on the menu, I trust the smell alone will draw in quite the crowd.
Thankfully, we don’t have long to speculate. Much of the equipment has already arrived (really, how much does he need?) and yesterday I found Wong in the space busily sanding down his countertops and counting down the three or four weeks until opening day.