‘At the end of the day, we all speak food’
European couple creates inclusive community crepe shop
“Point and ye shall receive.”
For those who don’t know American Sign Language, it might be the best way to communicate with Crepe Crazy’s staff of 30 deaf employees.
Owners Vladimir and Inna Giterman, originally from Russia and Ukraine, took a leap of faith in 1990 when they moved to America for better opportunities.
“Our dear friend … told us about Austin and its wonderful deaf school and community,” Vladimir Giterman said, “so we wanted to visit. We instantly fell in love with the city and its local food and beer.”
All of Vladmir Giterman’s life, he wanted to own his own business. The idea came to him when he stumbled upon a crepe café in Las Vegas. Childhood memories of his mother’s decadent crepes came flooding back, and in 2007, the couple began their Crepe Crazy journey at food festivals.
“After attending and winning Best Food Vendor at the (Dripping With) Taste Wine & Food Festival in Dripping Springs, it boosted our confidence, and our son Sergei found a place that turned out to be a great fit for us,” Inna Giterman said.
When they opened their first brick-and-mortar location in Dripping Springs in 2014, the Gitermans knew it was important to retain a presence in Austin, which led them to open a South Lamar location in 2015.
It’s no surprise Austinites and Hill Country folks are crazy for these crepes. Vladimir’s secret family batter recipe is paired with Inna’s filling creations, like Nutella and fruit. Other options tend to be on the more adventurous side, like prosciutto and apricot jam or lox and cream cheese.
“I compared many crepe café fillings across America and France,” Inna Giterman said. “It was important to us that our menu had a wide variety of options and was catering to the pickiest eaters and the foodies.”
Food may be their livelihood, but their biggest accomplishment is creating a deaf-friendly place to work.
“Our customers do not expect to (encounter) a deaf cashier or other deaf employees in the restaurant, but the transaction experience is pretty smooth. Our infamous saying, ‘point and ye shall receive,’ breaks the barrier between us and the customer, and at the end of the day, we all speak food.”
Whether the Gitermans are whipping up crepes on the restaurant’s stove or cooking a meal for two in their home, we’re proud to say that they and Crepe Crazy are powered by PEC.
Learn more about their menu and locations at www.crepecrazy.com.