By Jen Todd | The Tennessean
Nashville is spoiled with a wide variety of food trucks — so much so that one crepe maker is moving to Music City just to start her own food truck business.
Brittney Blackshear started Crepe A Diem as a catering company in Savannah, Ga., two years ago. She carried her batter, griddle and local ingredients to festivals, parties and more, but always dreamed of serving them from a truck.
“Crepe is a French street food, so I always pictured it should be served casually on the street for anybody,” said 26-year-old Blackshear.
She and others fought to have mobile eateries allowed in Savannah, but the ordinances didn’t allow it.
“There wasn’t a lot of support from other people,” Blackshear said. “I wasn’t ready to take (on the city) on my own.”
To pursue her dream and grow her business, she chose to start anew closer to her family and in a food truck-welcoming city.
“Nashville itself is a very fast-growing city in many industries,” she said. “I’m excited to get started.”
Crepe A Diem offers dessert crepes made with a simple, sweet batter and savory crepes made with buckwheat batter (or galette).
“My thing is, if I start with a good-tasting batter to begin with, and use fresh, good quality ingredients, I really don’t have to do much to it,” Blackshear said.
She plans to use local ingredients for seasonal specialties as well as the staple menu.
For savory, that menu includes a crepe with ham, Kenny’s Farmhouse Cheese, honey Dijon and arugula; another with ham, Swiss cheese and a sunny side up egg, and more. Regular sweet crepes include lemon and sugar, Nutella and banana, and baked apple with salted caramel and vanilla bean whipped cream.
“The French are very simple and traditional,” Blackshear said, “and I’m trying to respect that and keep the menu simple and traditional.”
Blackshear is a former graphic design student who discovered crepes while studying abroad in France. She played with crepe-making on her own, then studied it under French chef and owner of Savannah’s Papillote, Herve Didailler.
“I learned so much from him about cooking and vending a successful business,” she said. “He would stand over my shoulder and correct me on any little drip coming off the crepes.”
Crepe-making is not only a delicious task — it’s a showy one.
“I take the rake so (the batter) goes from a puddle in the middle to spread out like a pancake,” she said. “At the festivals, I’d have people just standing around to watch me make it.”
While she has learned the art of crepe-making, she is still learning to establish her business in both the food truck world and Nashville.
“I’ve probably called over 100 people over the city,” she said. “People have been so nice and helpful. … I’m excited to jump into it.”
Blackshear plans to have the truck up and running May 1. Crepe A Diem will also be at Mayor’s Field Day May 4 at LP Field.
“It’s a dream come true. I’m so excited about bringing good food and giving it out to all these people.”
Find more details on the truck’s Facebook page and on its Twitter account @crepeadiem.