Press Club

Solar Crepes Cart Launches in Ballston

There’s a new food cart on the scene in Arlington. Solar Crepes serves savory and sweet crepes, as well as coffee, cold drinks and snacks, all from a small, brightly-colored cart across Fairfax Drive from the Ballston Metro Station.

Owners Danna Andrews and Camille Dierksheide are trained chefs who share an interest in the environment, local food and good nutrition. That interest is apparent with the cart’s focus on sustainable, and locally-grown organic food. Many of the ingredients come from Lancaster Farm Fresh, a cooperative of growers in Pennsylvania.

Danna and Camille started to turn the vision of the cart into reality last September. They already owned their own catering and personal chef businesses and thus had a head-start on the culinary component of the cart. Danna’s French grandmother-in-law even helped out, supplying a family recipe for the cart’s popular chicken crepe.

When deciding where to operate the cart, the Alexandria residents say Arlington was a natural choice. Launching a food cart in Arlington, they said, was much easier than the District, where authorities had stopped giving out permits and returning phone calls. Alexandria, meanwhile, does not currently allow food carts.

“Arlington was honestly the easiest place to open up a business, they’re so business friendly,” Camille said. “Everybody was so helpful, they just made it really easy.”

Danna and Camille launched cart on Tuesday and were pleasantly surprised by the warm reception from curious local workers and residents.

The menu is constantly changing, with an emphasis on daily specials and seasonal items. On Wednesday, the savory specials were a tomato, basil, eggplant and mozzarella crepe and a bacon, spinach and cheese crepe. Fresh peaches were being sold from a box for 75 cents, while Toy Cow Creamery smoothies and Saratoga Springs water were on sale from an ice bucket built into the front of the cart.

Solar Crepes is just serving lunch now, Monday through Thursday, but Camille says they plan to start serving breakfast soon. Also in the works, when they can gather the funds: two 90-watt solar panels to power the cart and provide a more tangible explanation for its name.

See a review of the food at Solar Crepes here. More photos after the jump.

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