Growing Companies

At first, Jean-Francois Flechet, the city's ambitious waffle entrepreneur. served only waffles in a shared space in Findlay Market.

Now, the Taste of Belgium franchise serves buckwheat crepes, Belgian chocolate brownies, calzones and espresso drinks. You can find his waffles in coffee shops and his specialty items at the Banks, a bigger shop at Findlay, at North Market in Columbus and via a parner with a waffle trailer in Nashville, Tennessee.

His latest venture, a bistro at Twelfth and Vine streets, already has signage, and anticipation for its opening has grown as the summer aged into fall. For now, Flechet has his eyes on fall 2011 as a time to launch partial service at the bistro.

Once in full operation, the new space will hold 57 guests, as well as a chef’s table in the bakery. The bistro will employ between 30 and 40 people serving breakfast, lunch and, a new offering for Flechet, dinner. He plans to serve Belgian beers, mussels, fries and other traditional fare.

The bistro will also be home to a commissary and where Flechet and his employees bake products for all other locations. The Vine Street space will also house offices and help Flechet plan for even more expansions.

"A national brand with the idea of waffles, crepes and coffee is the long-term goal," says Flechet. "I want to stay anchored in OTR. I love it here and there is a lot of momentum behind the neighborhood right now."

By Evan Wallis
Taste of Belgium
1801 Race St # 9
Cincinnati, Ohio 45202