As a caterer, Lucien St. Onge's food plays a huge role in many momentous occasions.
He builds a rapport with clients and their families. He sees their christenings, birthday parties, graduations and anniversaries.
As a caterer, he sees a range of what York County likes, and he tries to customize each experience to his customers' taste.
After about 25 years in the restaurant industry, 41-year-old St. Onge has drawn from his experience to create a new endeavor - CC's Café.
He said many of his catering customers support the addition to his business, Culinary Creations.
St. Onge piloted the York eatery for five months in 2010 and opened it in April after completing renovations. CC's specializes in wraps and salads.
I've been waiting for months to profile this café. I live downtown and walk by often, and I love its decor.
Basil, chives, zucchini and peppers grow in pots on the high ledge of the cornflower building. Inside, fresh-baked loaves of organic breads sit in baskets. Faux-aged paint creates a look reminiscent of a classic European café.
I ordered a crab cake wrap. St. Onge started preparing the crab cake as one of his employees readied the honey wheat wrap at the counter. St. Onge yelled from the grill, asking me if I wanted grilled asparagus he had just made.
Of course. I can't say no to a veggie.
The 12-inch wrap came with two lump meat crab cakes, romaine lettuce, tomato, roasted red pepper and honey mustard. I savored it and saved half for later.
I liked the combination of ingredients, particularly the crab with asparagus. I especially liked the ability to customize my lunch without feeling like I was bothering restaurant employees.
St. Onge said it's the homemade ingredients that make his food special. He makes all of his sauces and meats on site.
He sold wraps at Central Market for about 10 years, where he said they took off. At the time, he said, wraps were just becoming popular locally.
Though he's been in the food industry for a while, he said it's important for businesses to reinvent themselves. He stayed consistent with the wraps, but he recently started selling bread. He plans to add focaccia pizza to the menu soon.
There's plenty of seating in the back of the restaurant. A row of black wired tables sits in a courtyard with light streaming in from a nearby fire escape. An additional room seats 40, which people may rent out for private parties.
St. Onge said he attempts to provide gourmet-style meals for his patrons at a reasonable price. But most important, he strives to please and build long-lasting relationships with his customers.
Cheap Eats profiles local restaurants with meals for less than $10. Suggestions are welcome. Reach Leigh Zaleski at 771-2101, email@example.com.
If you go
LOCATION: CC's Café and Culinary Creations, 33 N. Beaver St. in York
CUISINE: Wraps and salads
LEIGH'S PICK: Crab cake wrap ($7)
HOURS: 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday
PRICE RANGE: 50 cents to $9
ACCEPTS: Cash and credit
KID'S MENU: Ask for kid portions
DETAILS: Call 854-4937