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Panoramic Views > Mount Lebanon > Kesserwan > La crêperie

La Crêperie, the former El-Khazen Residence

La Crêperie is a restaurant where French-style pancakes are served, and where owners and chefs have each their respective secret recipes. Here we have a fine, appetizing cuisine presented attractively.

La Crêperie was founded in 1968 taking advantage of a fine venerable residence in hewn stone weathered over the years. It stands over a cliff falling vertically and giving a spectacular view over the Bay of Jounieh with its fairyland beauty.

Truly the site is unique, overlooking the Bay of Jounieh, which is surrounded by mountains which fall into the distance like the rollers of the sea, among them the summit of Harissa. From La Crêperie one can gaze on horizons of enchantment. The cliff and the hillock on which this former home stands used to belong to the El-Khazen family, the most eminent notables of Kesserouan. They transformed this noble house into a restaurant, La Crêperie, where a traditional menu is served cooked à la Chandeleur. There are also various other dishes following the traditions of both French and Lebanese cooking, not forgetting food from the sea.

According to the Christian liturgical calendar, la Chandeleur, Candlemas, falls on February 2nd, that is to say forty days after December 24th, Christmas Eve. It recalls an event described in the Gospel, namely the Presentation of the Infant Jesus by his mother Mary. This took place according to the requirements of Jewish custom forty days after the birth of the boy. The modern names of the feast are derived from the Latin Festa Candelarum, the Feast of the Candles. In Christian tradition candles are lighted on this day. This is particularly the case in the churches, and among the Catholics the priest may use this occasion to bless the candles of those who come to pray, already bought and used throughout the year. The faithful often take one of these candles home and on February 2nd put it in their window. For Christians its luminosity recalls the Light given us by Christ and symbolizes both the renewal of Faith and the purity of the Virgin Mary. The celebration falls on the thirty-third day of the year, and this is unaffected by leap years. In the West pancakes are eaten on Shrove Tuesday because there Lent begins on the Wednesday and in past times when eggs were forbidden during the fast they were eaten up on the day before it began. Here on the other hand, they are eaten at mid-Lent as a relief in the middle of the forty days of austerity.

At La Crêperie there is a wide variety of dishes to meet the demands of every gourmet. There is a warm and smiling welcome from attendants who hasten to be of service. Newly restored, the building is most elegant, with gardens whose grace gives pleasure.

To reach the restaurant, if one is coming from the South, that is to say from Beirut, one must pass through Kasleek or Sarba. Coming from the North one must take the Jounieh road and pass along the coast and under the cliff known as Batieh. There one finds in the rocky hollows by the sea a shrine where believers of every religion come to pray, meditate and plunge children or invalids in the water. Most know the patron of the place as Saint George while others call him “el-Khodr”, but all come to pray to God and make vows. Keeping to the north side to reach La Crêperie one reaches a building with a small dome in a little garden omvaded by weeds and small trees. This we have been told is the mausoleum of the Khazen family, proprietors of the site, and here lies their great-grandmother of the Khadra family.

But once at La Crêperie one feels that one is in heaven among the stars.

Joseph Matar
Translation from the French: Kenneth Mortimer

- La crêperie - Inside: >> View Movie << (2016-11-15)
- La crêperie - Outside: >> View Movie << (2016-11-15)
 

 


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