BRIGHTON, Mich. (WXYZ) - Jennifer Saum has mastered the art of making a crepe, actually 40 of them. She says it's all in the wrist! She makes a business selling these thin pancakes loaded with all sorts of goodies, sweet or savory. She also sells cheese and wine at her quaint shop in downtown Brighton.
“Why cheese and crepes?” I asked her. “I used to be a flight attendant and so with my travels all over Europe, those were my favorite things, going to the local markets everywhere in Europe,” Jenn explains.
So after losing her job back in 2008 and looking unsuccessfully for a new one, she thought why not bring a little of Europe to downtown Brighton. The problem, we were in the middle of the recession.
“Did people think you were crazy?” I asked. “Yeah, my accountant. When I told him what I wanted to do, he was like, ‘you want to what, when?’” she says.
But as a single mom of Jake, Jenn decided it was time to take control of her future.
"You know, I had thought about getting back in the corporate world right after I lost my job, but I thought I’m really tired of the corporate industry dictating my success and failure, so I’m going to create my own.”
So Jennifer took her severance and opened the Main Street Cheese Market in Brighton in 2009. Not too long ago, she added the Holy Crepe! Creperie.
“There were a few little struggles here and there, but for the most part, I’m doing great,” Jenn explains. “People have embraced me. I get people from everywhere.”
Maybe the best part… 11 year old Jake gets to help out his mom from time to time. Jakes loves it, mom does too, and so do the customers, who find Jake’s smile and attitude infectious.
“I may not be making the $80,000 that I was before, but there’s a huge tradeoff for that. There’s a quality of life. It’s a different kind of stress, but it’s challenging, and I love challenges,” she says.
And honestly, I love her crepes. After tasting one stuffed with chicken, brie cheese, Michigan dried tart cranberries, and a light raspberry walnut vinaigrette, I see why her business is booming!
You can visit the Main Street Cheese Shop and Holy Crepe! Creperie at 412 W. Main Street in Brighton