2013-09-25 / Restaurant of the Week

Food Craze

Food Craze opened just a couple of weeks ago but is already causing a buzz on Broadway with their inventive, artisan crepes, salads, entrees, burgers, desserts and more. Food Craze is the newest venue from the Varis family, who has 25 years of experience and success in the restaurant business. Breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks are made to order and served seven days a week. The tidy dining room has just a few sleek, dark wood tables and a counter with stools, or you can dine al fresco on bistro tables under red market umbrellas. Orders also fly out the door with fast, free delivery or pick up.

The amiable owners of Food Craze picked up on a European trend of offering hearty, oversized crepes filled with savory or sweet fillings, making them perfect for lunch, dinner, dessert, or an anytime snack. Best of all, the batter is made fresh every day and you can order them with white flour, whole wheat flour or gluten free. All crepes are made fresh on the spot and served piping hot. They’re very light and flavorful, never greasy or heavy. There are a dozen savory, artisan crepes and a dozen sweet varieties, so you’re sure to find your favorite. Chef Dimitri will even make your own customized crepe if you wish, as each one is made to order. The SoHo crepe is a popular choice, filled with either chicken or roasted turkey, avocado, roasted red peppers, and chopped bacon, then dressed with chipotle mayonnaise garnish ($8.95). My friend and I tried the Vegan crepe and were very pleased with the flavorful veggie cake inside made from zucchini, bell peppers, corn, carrots, chickpeas, guacamole, herbs and mild spices, making this extremely filling and delicious. In fact, even the two of us together couldn’t finish this monstrous sized crepe. Crepes such as the DeNiro, Blue Buffalo, and the Big Boss are filled with chicken cutlets and a variety of toppings to satisfy your taste. The whole wheat crepes add an extra layer of texture and flavor to all these varieties.

Start with one of their tempting appetizers, including their famous fried gorgonzola balls, crunchy on the outside and all melty, savory inside. They rest on a generous bed of greens and offer plenty to share ($9.45). Same goes for the crunchy coconut shrimp, served with delicious mango dipping sauce. We dove into the creamy, delicious homemade spinach and artichoke dip, served warm with homemade red and blue tortilla chips. I will try the mac ‘n’ cheese balls next time, along with the crunchy chicken tenders that are popular with kids and adults alike.

The Salad Craze includes their caramelized peach salad composed of mixed spring greens and sweet peaches, crunchy walnuts, dried cranberries and bits of gorgonzola cheese with a zesty balsamic vinaigrette dressing. This salad could be a meal in itself, as it is served with triangles of grilled pita bread, or can be shared by two or more as a side salad. The chicken avocado Cobb salad is another great choice, filled with grilled chicken, smoky bacon, avocado, chopped egg, bleu cheese and tomato, topped with creamy cilantrolime dressing. House made chicken soup, tomato basil soup or beef chili make a great starter to any meal.

If you prefer an entrée, the Craze Burgers are a twohanded affair, made with eight ounces of Angus beef or bison meat for a small upcharge. The Food Craze signature burger is topped with caramelized red onion, American cheese, lettuce, tomato and secret Craze sauce. The Broadway Blue is topped with onion, arugula, sautéed mushrooms and bleu cheese. You’ll also find juicy turkey burgers and a veggie burger. Enjoy the Jack Daniels shell steak, grilled to order in special BBQ sauce, a charbroiled skirt steak, shrimp skewers, pan-seared wild Atlantic salmon or barbecued chicken as a main course, with your choice of onion rings, sweet potato fries, or waffle fries.

Save room for dessert or just pop in anytime for one of their decadent sweet crepes such as the S’mores Heaven, Reese’s pieces dream, caramel banana, rainbow cookie monster and honey walnut crunch. These enormous crepes are beautifully presented and taste even better so come often and try them all.

Food Craze opens at 7:30 in the morning for hearty breakfasts, to stay or to go. The organic egg sandwich costs just $2.45 and can be packed up to go on your way to the subway. Relax with the Big Boss Breakfast, made with two organic eggs, bacon, ham or sausage, Craze fries, toast and your choice of pancakes, French toast or a Belgian waffle. The Craze omelet or charbroiled steak and eggs make a great weekend brunch, as does the healthy power omelet, loaded with fresh vegetables and turkey bacon.

Food Craze proudly serves a wide variety of Segafredo coffee drinks made with robust Segafredo coffee from Italy. Espresso, cappuccino and American coffee are available too, but you ought to try a caffe mocha, hot or iced, classic hot chocolate, or the coffee treat called “affogato” which literally means “drowned” because a scoop of ice cream is drowned into rich espresso for a delicious Italian treat.

Welcome Food Craze to the neighborhood by stopping in for breakfast, lunch, dinner or a tasty snack anytime. With artisan crepes, salads, burgers, shakes, entrees and coffee drinks, you’ll soon find your favorites here.

36-19 Broadway
Astoria  718.606.6566


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