$7 at CoCo's Crepes & Coffee

Where: CoCo's Crepes & Coffee, 218 Gray, Houston 713-521-0700 What $7 gets you: Crepes: dessert, breakfast or main meal crepes. Panini. A wide assortment of coffee, tea and other drinks. It does not get you any alcohol, though. This is BYOB.

Open seven days a week from 6 in the morning to 10 at night (till midnight on Friday and Saturdays) this corner restaurant is relatively low on overhead and high on good, competently executed crepes. Recommended? Yes, if you like crepes done by people who know how to make them.

On a recent chilly Saturday, this place was loaded with college kids and all-generation families looking for good food and a good deal. A few stalwart souls sat outside at the sidewalk tables, but it really wasn't the day for it even fortified with their hot chocolate topped off with whipped cream. As the wind picked up, most everyone eventually came inside to the warmth.

Even standing at the counter wasn't too bad. It's fascinating to watch the crepes being built, one right after another. And the cooks and order taker were certainly doing their best to get patrons seated as soon as possible. Food service isn't the fastest on earth but it wasn't terribly slow on this Saturday.

My dining companion went pretty basic with a build-your-own crepe with goat's cheese and mushrooms. She really liked it, but said next time she'd probably add in the Morrocan sausage.

The No. 1 crepe on the menu is a chicken, spinach and cheese combo. The chicken was lightly done, not tough, and the flavors were deliciously well blended. Next time, I'm going for the desserts.

Lucky for you: CoCo's offers a daily special as well as several vegetarian crepes.

-- Margaret Downing

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