Gotta B Crepes named in Yelp’s ‘Top 100 Places to Eat in 2020’


Zoe Malin/Daily Senior Staffer

Ryan and Kathia Jones founded Gotta B Crepes in 2010. They opened their restaurant location at 2901 Central St. in November 2018.

Zoe Malin, Reporter

When Ryan and Kathia Jones, co-owners of Gotta B Crepes, woke up on Jan. 7, they did not expect to receive a national accolade for their small business on Central Street. To their surprise, Gotta B Crepes was named one of Yelp’s top 100 places to eat in 2020. It is the first and only eatery featured from Chicago’s North Shore. The restaurant joins those from across the country, many of which are independently owned.

“Folks like us are making things we love and that mean something to us,” said Ryan Jones. “All the places on Yelp’s list are worth eating at.”

Angela Shaffer, community director for Yelp Chicago North Shore, said this is the seventh year the list has been published.

Yelp’s data science team used ratings and the number of reviews in 2019 across the United States to determine the list, according to information on their website. Yelp community managers then curated the list.

Yelp’s Top 100 is powered by the people,” Shaffer said. “It celebrates places that have gotten great recognition from customers.”

The Joneses met in 2005 while working at the Magic Pan Crepe Stand in Northbrook. The eatery went out of business in 2010 and the pair didn’t skip a beat; they sold crepes out of their house in Chicago. The Joneses then moved to Evanston and operated out of commercial and production kitchens. They expanded by selling their crepes at farmers markets and other locations.

Gotta B Crepes opened its restaurant at 2901 Central St. in November 2018. The space features an open kitchen and lots of seating.

Gotta B Crepes specializes in made-to-order crepes. The menu is split between sweet and savory options, and customers can add or subtract ingredients when they order. Kathia Jones developed some menu items around flavors she grew up eating in Mexico. She also created recipes for homemade sauces.

Zoe Malin/Daily Senior Staffer
Gotta B Crepes specializes in made-to-order crepes. The menu features sweet and savory varieties.

Additionally, Gotta B Crepes offers classic, gluten free, vegan and herb and kale batters. It has a dedicated area for preparing gluten-free and nut-free crepes, too.

A fundamental part of Gotta B Crepes’ operation is working with local farms. They cook using butter and goat cheese from Midwest producers, and get eggs from a longtime friend at Swing Belly Farm. The Joneses purchase vegetables from a variety of growers, including The Talking Farm in Skokie, IL.

“We love to work with other people whose passion is what they do,” said Ryan Jones.

Weinberg sophomore Caroline Forbess said she looks forward to visiting Gotta B Crepes at the Downtown Evanston Farmers’ Market. She said everything she orders is delicious.

“Watching my crepe made right in front of me is an exciting experience,” said Forbess. “The staff is so generous and accommodating.”

Ryan Jones said Gotta B Crepes is thankful for Yelp’s recognition. But, satisfying people’s hunger is what inspires him. He said he is confident that Gotta B Crepes will be a part of the Evanston community for years to come.

“We believe you only get so many meals in your lifetime,” said Ryan Jones. “You have to make each one just the way it’s gotta be.”

Correction: A previous version of this story misspelled the name of Yelp Chicago North Shore’s community director. The director’s correct name is Angela Shaffer. The Daily regrets the error.

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