Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Lunch #20: Unicorn Crepes

ClosedUnicorn Crepes is no longer in business.
Unicorn Crepes The MSG150 advance crew spotted Unicorn Crepes last week on a recon run. Some of us have suffered nightmares seeded by plasticized window crepes ever since. All of us, however, were excited as ten of us headed out today. This is one of the few truly new cuisines we have encountered in our journey so far.
Unicorn Crepes, Seattle
Address: 621 6th Ave S, Seattle, WA 98104
Cuisine: Japanese: Crepes
Average rating: 3.8 chopsticks
Lunch date: 1/16/2008 @ 12:15:00
Time taken to be seated: 0 minutes
Time to take order: 0 minutes
Time for food to arrive: 5 minutes
Total lengh of meal: 35 minutes
Chopstix quality: Paper Cone Holder
Do they use MSG?: No
Where is the owner/chef from?: Kyoto, Japan... but they have lived in the US for a while.
Number of tables: 5
Number of occupied tables: 0 (0%)
Number of business lunch tables: 5
Number of "local" tables: 0
Healthcode Score: 0
Links: Yelp!, Urbanspoon
Unicorn Crepes

Luncher: Emmett

Lunch: Pizza + Banana Choco Whip - $4.99 + $3.65
Rating: 4 Chopsticks

Emmett's Review

Man I was scared about this place. For those that don't know me, I hate mayonnaise. I mean, I REALLY hate mayonnaise. It's white, gooey, and disgusting. So when I walked by this place early in the week, it was pretty obvious that they use a liberal amount of mayonnaise on all of their meal crepes. However, they did have a couple of options that don't have the lattice-work of mayo portrayed on their fake plastic crepe models. I would go for one those. Yes, this plan could work. We'll see.

The place is quite nice on the inside. It's well lit, and you can see them prepare everything in front of you. The people working there were great. I got the Pizza Crepe, he asked if I wanted green peppers and onions. Yes! They put a little pizza sauce, the veggies, some lean pepperoni, and cheese in their freshly made crepes. It comes out warm and tasty. The crepe itself is light, flaky, and sweet. It holds up pretty well to the kind you get in Paris. The pizza fillings rounded it out to make a fantastic crepe. The sweetness of the crepe mixed well with the savory of the pizza ingredients. It was delicious, and far less filling than a slice of pizza.

For dessert I had the Banana Choco Whip crepe. It was good, but actually kind of heavy and filling. I think I enjoyed the Pizza Crepe more.

I was pleasantly surprised by this place. I'll definitely be back.

Luncher: Adam

Lunch: Unicorn Crepe with Cheese + Banana Custard Choco Whip - $4.99 + $3.65
Rating: 4 Chopsticks

Adam's Review

It's called Unicorn Crepes. This is going to be good.

I ordered the Unicorn Crepe, because I thought a crepe made of a Mythical Beast Meat (MBM) would be magnificently delicious. Turns out that the Unicorn Crepe isn't actually made of MBM... it's made of Teriyaki chicken, boiled egg, cabbage, mayo, and the House Special Sauce (HSS). I was pleasantly surprised about how good the crepe was (even though it was lacking MBM). The hard boiled egg must have been pretty cooked recently, because it hadn't turned yellow/green around the yolk yet. The crepe was fresh... I know because I watched very attractive young woman behind the counter make it. I liked the crepe, and will definitely come back again when I need a light lunch.

Since we were reviewing the place, I decided that I needed a dessert crepe too. I ordered what was recommended by the cashier.. the Banana Custard Maple Whip. Its made with homemade custard and organic maple syrup. It's a winner.

The three people running the place were all very nice, and two of them were siblings.

Good food. Kinda high, but reasonable prices. Nice bathroom. Great service.

Luncher: Geary

Lunch: Cheese Chili Hot Dog + Ice Strawberry Whip - $4.99 + $3.65
Rating: 3 Chopsticks

Geary's Review

Just because you can imagine it, doesn't mean it's a good idea. Leave it to Japanese youth to come up with this one: French Crepes wrap around American lunches and deserts. OK, the desert part seems like a good idea, but someone had too much Sake when they thought about putting tuna salad in a crepe. And, as if to point out how bad an idea this is, someone crafted plastic replicas of the food to place in the window to scare people off. This was my state of mind when we walked into Unicorn Crepes. Would Unicorn Crepes need a unicorn chaser?

My first impression upon entering was that someone had fused a French creperie with a food stall from the state fair and pulled three friendly, good looking kids out of a Japanese disco to run it. As it turns out, it was the three kids that did the fusing, and the creperie + carny food thing is currently a big deal in Japan. Being hesitant, I waited back and was the last of the group to order. The three owners are energetic, and excited about their food. I watched them methodically make everyone's crepes. Even though they rolled up the crepe before handing it over, they carefully constructed each as if it were going to be displayed open faced in the window. The meat and veggies are carefully placed inside and the sauces are streamed on top in an artful pattern. By the time it was my turn to order I had forgotten about the scary window crepes and was excited to place my order for a Cheese Chili Hot Dog Crepe. Bring it on!

It far exceeded my expectations. The "Hot Dog" was not just the run-of-the-mill dog, it was half of a nice, well spiced sausage link. The chili too was better than expected. The crepe was seasoned with some diced onions and chopped lettuce to give it a little crunch. The personal Tabasco packets they provided added a nice little extra kick. Maybe a crepe is a better chili cheese dog holder than a soft spongy hot dog bun. Who'd a thunk?

I topped off my lunch with an Ice Strawberry Whip Crepe which consists of a crepe filled with ice cream, strawberries, and whipped cream. It was as good as it sounds. Really, how could that not be delicious. If you are looking for an afternoon treat in the ID, don't look past the desert crepes at Unicorn Crepes. I think even the one with Corn Flakes would not let you down.

In the end I am torn on how to score this spot. Although the lunch crepe was better than expected, I don't think I would go out of my way to get it again. Also, $9 seems a bit much for a fairly light lunch. They should consider a combo lunch special. Maybe $7 for a lunch and desert crepe. If this blog were about deserts, this place would be a five, but it's not.

PS: Jess Thompson over at the Seattle Weekly Voracious blog also visited Unicorn Crepes recently but was too chicken to try the lunch crepes. Do the right thing Jess. Don't be a chicken. I challenge you to eat a lunch crepe.

Luncher: Jared

Lunch: Unicorn Crepe with Cheese + Custard Creme - $4.99 + $3.65
Rating: 3 Chopsticks

Jared's Review

A little on the small side for me. This is probably better for a dessert snack than for lunch.

Also, they can’t handle large crowds, and need to work on handling orders in order.

Luncher: Al

Lunch: Cheese Chicken Salad + Almond Choco Whip - $4.99 + $3.65
Rating: 4 Chopsticks

Al's Review

Great, fast, light lunch.

Luncher: Erin

Lunch: Pizza + Banana Custard Choco Whip - $4.99 + $3.65
Rating: 4 Chopsticks

Erin's Review

This is a tiny place, but filled crepes make great walking food! I had a pizza crepe ($5.50 with tax). It was a fresh made crepe filled with pepperoni, onion, bell peppers, & cheese. It was surprisingly good: I thought this would be strange combination, with the slightly sweet crepe and savory ingredients, but it worked! Billed as a "light meal" it was made while I waited, and I did not wait long. I also had a banana chocolate crepe with whip cream for dessert (courtesy of Michael), which was very sweet and yummy. The only improvement they should make is to perhaps use higher quality ingredients. Most everything was middle of the road. Service was friendly, and the food was tasty. This is a place I would go back to, it's perfect for a smaller, light meal or mid-afternoon snack.

Luncher: Jeff

Lunch: Teriyaki Cheese Salad + Banana Custard Choco Whip - $4.99 + $3.65
Rating: 4 Chopsticks

Jeff's Review

I was happily surprised by Unicorn Crepes! I had the Cheese & Teriyaki salad crepe. While this may sound a little odd – and the picture made it look questionable – it was actually fantastic. My ingredients were fresh. It was an excellent serving size the actual crepe was just about perfect. Not too sweet. Not too thick.

The presentation of preparation was great. Although your food ended up wrapped into a crepe with a paper cone around it, the staff was well aware of the art to preparing the food with layout, balance and aesthetic appeal. It was entertaining to watch. The only negative: It was difficult for this small place to handle our 10 person volume. By the time I received my lunch crepe – many of us had already finished and were ordering desert.

Desert: I had the Banana / Custard / Maple crepe. I was extremely surprised this wasn't too sweet. The fresh whip cream was light – without being overly sticky sweet. The custard was nice. The maple syrup was tasty and they judged the amount needed appropriately. It would have been easy to add too much. I’ll definitely be back for more!

Luncher: Michael

Lunch: Cheese Chili Hot Dog + Banana Custard Choco Whip - $4.99 + $3.65
Rating: 5 Chopsticks

Michael's Review

A bunch of bored white software developers eat tasty American crap wrapped in a French pancake served by Asian kids in a Seattle lunch spot while listening to obnoxious Japanese dance music. Fantastic. This is why we live on the Pacific Rim and not in Random McBoring Town in some brown square state out in the middle.

My Chili Cheese Hot Dog crepe was delivered to me with the words: "You have to wait for the best." He wasn't kidding. Sure my lunch came off the 2 grills a few minutes behind the pizza crepe, but you can't rush awesomeness. No, awesomeness has to be grilled up and carefully placed on a steaming hot fresh crepe and served with chili.

There isn't another lunch place in the ID that is this new, this tasty, and this much fun.

I hear that Unicorn Crepes is only 3 weeks old. I predict this place will have Salumi sized lunch lines stretched out the door by June.

100% win.

Luncher: Rob

Lunch: Potato Salad + Corn Flake Choco Whip - $4.99 + $3.65
Rating: 3 Chopsticks

Rob's Review

Japanese-style crepes? I have to admit I was nervous while marching with the MSG150 mob to this new little restaurant. Most of the light meal crepes feature some sort of meat, so my choices were tuna salad or potato salad. I've never been a fan of tuna salad, so I bravely ordered the potato salad crepe. And yeah, that's what I got: potato salad, boiled egg, and some mayo all wrapped up in a nice, light, fresh crepe. It was decent potato salad, at least, but still, it was a potato salad lunch. Didn't fill me up, either. I went back for one of the sweet crepes and took my chance with the corn flake choco whip. The corn flakes gave a fun, crunchy edge to the whipped cream and chocolate, I was happy to discover. So, while I probably won't have lunch here again, I'll definitely come back for their dessert crepes.

Luncher: Tyson

Lunch: Pizza + Banana Custard Choco Whip - $4.99 + $3.65
Rating: 4 Chopsticks

Tyson's Review

The pizza crepe was wonderful tasting, though it wasn’t enough to fill me up. You will need to buy at least two crepes to be satisfied. The banana chocolate custard dessert crepe was not as good as I hoped. Though I’m not a huge custard fan and always forget that until I order it. Haha. It was still good though.

Unicorn Crepes Photos

Unicorn Crepes
Unicorn Crepes

The MSG150 Invasion
The MSG150 Invasion

Menu Board
Menu Board

Plastic Window Crepes
Plastic Window Crepes

They put the fig leaf on the wrong side
They put the fig leaf on the wrong side

More Plastic Crepes
More Plastic Crepes

The Unicorn Crepes Team
The Unicorn Crepes Team

The Unicorn Crepes Team
The Unicorn Crepes Team

Pizza Crepe in production
Pizza Crepe in production

Unicorn Crepe in production
Unicorn Crepe in production

Almond Choco Whip in production
Almond Choco Whip in production

Banana Choco Whip in production
Banana Choco Whip in production

Corn Flake Choco Whip in production
Corn Flake Choco Whip in production

1/2 of a Pizza Crepe
1/2 of a Pizza Crepe

Potato Salad Crepe attack
Potato Salad Crepe attack

Cheese Chili Hot Dog Crepe
Cheese Chili Hot Dog Crepe

Ice Strawberry Whip Crepe
Ice Strawberry Whip Crepe

Where unicorns pee
Where unicorns pee

MSG150 post invasion
MSG150 post invasion

They removed the scaffolding from the HCG today
They removed the scaffolding from the HCG today

3 comments:

Geary said...

Lots of pics of crazy Japanese Crepes on flickr

Daniel said...

Damn...CLOSED Monday and Tuesday! I really wanted crepes for lunch. Oh well, will have to try again soon. I think they open at 11:30 other days of the week. I just noticed this place myself a few days ago.

Anonymous said...

I'm pretty sure they're at the top of the escalators in the Westlake Mall food court now.