Breve is a simple name for a simple cafe. Breve began as a start-up by a local couple, Billy and Mandy Nguyen, with its first shop opening in the downtown area and a second  location recently opened in the Northeast Heights. The cafe has burgeoned in popularity and attracts many patrons, from brunch-goers to caffeine junkies to after-school loungers. Serving handmade crepes alongside fresh-brewed coffee, Breve’s incredible food is matched by its cozy, open ambiance. Its cool color palette is complemented by its atmosphere of simplicity; couches and wooden tables furnished with art supplies project the comfortable vibe that has become associated with coffee shops, but without the usual noise and bustle. Rather, the cafe seems to make people slow down, encouraged by the simple but delicious, and perfectly Instagrammable, food.

Breve also offers a more customer-friendly alternative to lines. Customers mark their crepe orders with dry-erase markers on reusable laminated sheets, then give them to the cashier and order coffee. When I went in, I was surprised by how peaceful it was, despite the hectic holiday shopping from which I had just emerged. Though there were many patrons in the cafe, the lack of lines helped create a relaxing atmosphere. I ordered two crepes—one with a peanut butter spread and Oreo topping, and the other with Nutella and strawberries—as well as the cafe’s namesake Breve Coffee. The crepes were ready in under five minutes despite the huge volume of customers. Both came in paper wraps that made it easy to enjoy the treats without getting messy and were delicious, with just the right amount of toppings inside of a warm, fresh-made crepe. The coffee, which took only a couple of minutes longer, was served in a handmade mug, topped with a layer of foam, and was deliciously creamy, with the notes of fresh coffee coming through perfectly. Though my stomach told me otherwise, the café seemed to beg me to slow down and enjoy the meal, making it seem like a homemade breakfast.

Overall, my experience at Breve was incredible, with the crepes—particularly the one with Nutella and strawberry—standing out as a clear favorite. Breve bills itself as “a crepe shop that makes delicious coffee,” and I could not agree more with that. However, it offered more than a memorable brunch: it also provided a short respite from the cold and the chaos of holiday preparations, with its low-key and cozy aura. Breve also offers paninis and lunch, and is open until 4 p.m., making it the perfect morning breather or after-school getaway. With its delicious food and easy-to-find locations, Breve is certainly making its home in Albuquerque, and will continue to provide patrons with a wonderful brunch experience.

Find Breve downtown at 400 Gold Ave. SW and in the Heights at 6001 Osuna Rd. NE.

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