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Four Leaf Brings Four Seasons of Tea to Little Tokyo

By Ed Fuentes
Published: Friday, August 20, 2010, at 11:17AM
IMG_5576 Ed Fuentes

Ginnie Lu named her Cafe Four Leaf to note the seasons for tea. For a hot summer night, she recommends Mango green tea.

Tea entrepreneur Ginnie Lu opened Four Leaf to offer crepes, teas, and coffees with healthier fare. Beyond the usual sweets, Lu also wanted to bring healthier choices to Downtown.

“We are doing green, using high quality treats that are organic healthy stuff,” says Lu, who was out on the Little Tokyo sidewalk on Saturday to introduce her cafe to the Nisei Week crowds.

Open for two months, Four Leaf’s extensive menu choices have created favorable buzz. “Much of our tea comes from Taiwan and has been winning medals,” says Lu, who is Taiwanese herself. “Four Leaf is our way of saying our teas follow the four seasons, since every season has different teas. Some are good for summer, others for winter.”

Le Cordon Bleu-trained chef Molly Yen is clearly having as much fun creating the dish names as she did the recipes, and many of her menu items are as whimsical as the eatery’s interior design of woods and greens.

On the list of eight Sweet Crepes, you can select “I Never Drink Wine,” a concoction with red wine, poached pear, candied pecans and vanilla bean gelato with another dash of house red wine ($6.95). “Summer Camp” is a crepe with chocolate-chips, marshmallow, crushed graham crackers and chocolate gelato ($6.50).

Yen also has seven Savory Crepes suitable for lunch or a light dinner. “The Moody Cow” holds Korean-style spicy beef with mixed cheese and is served with kim chi salad ($6.95). The boldly-named “The Public Lover” is made of pepperoni, roasted bell pepper, and mixed cheeses topped with tomato sauce ($6.50).

There are two vegetarian crepes at Four Leaf. “My Country Fair” is topped with roasted corn, pico de gallo, guacamole, romaine lettuce and sour cream ($6). “Caprese” has tomato with mozzarella cheese, balsamic and basil aioli ($6.25).

If the recipes on the menu are not enough, diners can also create their own savory crepes with ingredients under the categories of Surf & Turf, Cheeses, Greens, and a choice of sauces under Creamies.

For those preferring a sugar coma, try the sweet crepe or waffle mix-and-match choices under Fruity (strawberry, banana, kiwi, blueberry, mango); Lovable (chocolates or nutella); Frozen Treats (gelatos made of vanilla bean, green tea, chocolate or strawberry); sweetie (whipped creams, candied pecans, red bean paste, or toasted almonds); or to top it all, sugar (powdered, citrus, tea infused, cinnamon, or butter).

You will have to supply the name of your creation.

Four Leaf: Crepes, Tea & More / 118A E. 2nd St. / Open Mon-Fri, 11am to 11pm

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