A convenience store on a university campus might seem an unlikely place to set up a crepe station, but for Bowling Green State University in Bowling Green, Ohio, the idea works.
The concept, branded The Daily Press, took over a vacant spot in a campus c-store that has hosted an evolving lineup of concepts.
“We needed something new for the space, and we were looking for something a little different,” says Jon Zachrich, director of marketing, communications and technology with BGSU Dining by Chartwells. “One of the staff members loves crepes, and we thought that was something you don’t see too often.”
The dining team began designing The Daily Press in the summer of 2021, and the concept opened the following fall, offering a menu of savory and sweet crepes.
With the original location under renovation, this fall the creperie moved to an even busier location, within the Union Market food court in the student union. The station is open Monday through Friday, 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. The operation is strictly grab-and-go, and plentiful seating is available in the food court.
Photo credit: BGSU Dining By Chartwells
Photo: The Daily Press operates within Bowling Green’s student union.
Operating the creperie requires at least two employees who follow a streamlined production process. An opening staffer who arrives at 8:30 a.m. preps and sets up the station. A second team member arrives around 10 a.m. to help with the lunch rush, which usually runs from 11 to 1. Training is essentially hands-on: the trainee shadows another employee before being assigned to cover the station.
The opening employee prepares the crepe shells in advance. When an order is placed, the team member only needs to fill and warm the crepes on the crepe maker. Typical turnaround time is five minutes; there is no pre-order option.
Since the move, “we are simultaneously making and serving crepes and selling the sandwiches and salads from Fresh Foods to Go,” says Heather Haydn, general manager of Market Convenience Stores at Bowling Green. Crepe fillings include turkey, ham, breakfast sausage, eggs, spinach, cheddar cheese, swiss cheese, Nutella, chocolate chips, peanut butter, hot sauce and ranch. A recent LTO combined apple pie filling and caramel.
Last year, orders for sweet crepes outpaced savory by more than two to one, but so far this year sweet and savory orders are more even. Last year, Daily Press opened earlier, at. 9 a.m., resulting in stronger orders for breakfast-themed crepes with sausage, eggs and cheese. Business is steady throughout the day, Haydn says.
“An internal customer remarked that our savory crepes, which are made with buckwheat flour, are the same as what they had while in Paris,” Haydn says.
The Daily Press theme is reinforced through imagery of vintage campus newspaper clippings and delivery of the campus and local newspapers.
BGSU Dining promotes Daily Press through graphics around campus and on social media, and since launching, it has steadily gained a larger fan base.
“It’s definitely not breaking any records, but it has an awesome following,” Zachrich says. “More and more students seem to find it every year,” Zachrich says. Parents visiting campus also remark on the novelty of a crepe station.
“From an ROI standpoint, it’s been absolutely worth it,” he adds.