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Dog Lane gets taste of France with new cafe

By Alex Sferrazza
On January 31, 2014

Le Petit Marche Café, part of the new Co-Op Bookstore at Storrs Center, does its very best to bring a touch of France to Storrs. For the most part it succeeds in this effort and while there is room for improvement, for true foodies there is little doubt that Le Petit Marche is the best café around campus yet.
Many of the same pastries and soups that can be found throughout other cafés on campus are also served here. However, Le Petit features a variety of unique items exclusive to the cafe. From croissants and fresh baguettes to chocolate tarts and éclairs, the selection is impressively extensive.
The biggest draw to the cafe will undoubtedly be the crepes, this cafe's signature item. A french staple filled to order, the crepe itself provides a very unique treat and when topped with ice cream truly hits the spot. While the crepes at Le Petit can be tasty, anyone who has ever had the pleasure of trying the brilliant, fresh, liquor infused crepes at North Dining Hall can tell you there is absolutely no comparison. The cafe's crepes are also a tad expensive considering the relatively small portions. Then again it's nice to have such an exotic dessert available for purchase, and it helps Le Petit stand out from the rest of the pack.
But for those with a sweet tooth, Le Petit features far more than simply crepes and French pastries. A selection of ice cream and yogurt is also available, with a few unconventional toppings from fig jam to Nutella peanut butter.

The sandwiches at the cafe are equally impressive. Half sandwiches only cost $3.99 each, aren't exactly tiny and come loaded with a variety of upscale meat and veggie fillings. Throw in the variety of fresh baked bread these concoctions come piled on and you've got hands down one of the best sandwiches available at UConn.
For those who tire of enjoying the same items over and over again, the cafe's selection of specialty crepes and sandwiches alters each week, creating a refreshing change of pace from a typical menu.
Overall, the food selection at Le Petit is fantastic, but the ambiance is a bit of a disappointment. Rather than provide a cozy atmosphere that one can find at a Starbucks, Barnes and Noble cafe or even at Lu's, disappointingly, Le Petit features comparatively bland cafeteria style seating as well as relatively bright lighting which significantly reduces the effectiveness of the atmosphere the cafe otherwise creates.
If you ever find yourself down by Dog Lane, Le Petit Marche is definitely worth a try. Even if you stop in just for dessert, you'll likely to find an item you've never had before. In time this cafe might very well end up being one of the most popular spots in Storrs Center.
Rating: 8.5/10

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