By Emily G. Peters
Near the base of the “Village of the Foothills,” French bistro Monsieur Crêpe is bringing a little piece of Paris to the sidewalks of Sierra Madre. To chef Aurelien “Tony” Mosconi, the hamlet’s evolving food scene is about as close to European cafe culture as you can get in Los Angeles.
“I wanted a place that would be between the regular casual restaurant and fine dining; between the bakery and the crêpe place; something everyone could afford with different food items where everyone could find something they like and be served with great customer service,” said Mosconi of his cafe. “I wanted to bring the authenticity, me being a Parisian, but still mix it with the California touch that I love so much.”
Born and raised in Paris, France, Mosconi’s crêperie fills a void the neighborhood didn’t realize it had. The affordable menu serves both light and indulgent bites for breakfast, lunch or dinner (on the weekends) and excellent gourmet pours from its coffee menu. And although you could sit inside, the bistro tables that line the sidewalk are ideal for some Parisian people-watching over a delicious meal.
“Almost every single thing here is made from scratch,” said Mosconi. “The caramel sauce, chocolate sauce, whipped cream, vinaigrettes, aioli, bread pudding, quiches, doughs, caramelized onions, caramelized apples… the Monsieur Crêpe team puts in the hard work to make sure everything here is made fresh from quality products.”
The sweet crêpes are undeniably the stars of the show. From the simple “La Sucre” with sugar, melted butter and homemade Chantilly cream to the blackout delicious “La Tropique” with tropical fruit and salted caramel, Monsieur Crêpe easily snags the best dessert in town. Marconi’s secret? Building on tradition.
“I use a recipe from a chef friend of mine from the Grand Master Crêpe School of Brittany. This dough recipe is 400 years old!” said the chef, who uses naturally gluten-free buckwheat as well as whole wheat flours in his preparations. “We have great crêpes, but amazing salads and sandwiches, inspired from French cuisine and adapted to a Californian kitchen.”
Celebrating its fourth anniversary this October, in many ways the bistro is still in its infancy as a neighborhood fixture. The chef and his talented team are slowly incorporating changes based on customer feedback, and look to open a second location early in 2018. To Mosconi, these indie restaurant concepts and supportive patrons are vital to local culture—they’re what makes each neighborhood in L.A. unique.
“Sierra Madre is such an amazing city. It reminds me of the south of France,” he said, praising the community support for his neighborhood cafe. “The view of these mountains is incredible and the atmosphere is just so cozy. Feels good to work here—feels like home!”
Monsieur Crêpe is located at 54 W. Sierra Madre Blvd. in downtown Sierra Madre and is open Tuesday through Thursday, 7:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Friday through Sunday. Contact the cafe for catering or questions at www.monsieurcrepe.com | 626.355.1508 | firstname.lastname@example.org and follow along on Facebook @monsieurcrepe91024.